Spain 'may already be in second wave,' France on-the-spot tests: COVID-19 daily bulletin
Updated 01:25, 25-Jul-2020
Aden-Jay Wood


- Friday marks the first day of the new face-covering regulations in England. People will face fines of up to $120 if they fail to wear a covering in supermarkets, shopping centers, banks, post offices and takeaway food outlets.

- France has advised its citizens against traveling to the Spanish region of Catalonia after a spike in infections in the area. 

- The second COVID-19 test results of Bulgaria's Prime Minister Boyko Borissov and its head of his political team Denitsa Zheleva, who had initially tested positive, came back negative.

- France's Prime Minister Jean Castex has said on-the-spot COVID-19 tests will be mandatory for people arriving from 16 countries where infections have risen. These countries include the U.S. and Brazil. 

- A further 31 workers who worked at a slaughterhouse in Germany in mid-June have this week tested positive. The plant in Rheda-Widenbrueck had closed in June after 1,500 people tested positive for the virus. 

- Spain's health officials have said the country could already be experiencing a second wave of the virus.

- Norway will reimpose a mandatory 10-day quarantine period for people arriving from Spain as of Sunday.

- Belgium's government has paused its plan to ease the country's lockdown, in favour of bringing in new restrictive measures after infection rates rose again. On Saturday, wearing a face mask will be mandatory in more of Belgium's public spaces.

- COVID-19 could cause a huge rise in new migration once countries' borders reopen, says the head of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), Jagan Chapagain. 

- Disney has postponed the debut of its new movie Mulan indefinitely. The news will be a huge blow for global theaters, which were banking on the film to help attract audiences back.

- Hungary's economy could shrink by around 5 percent this year, more than the government's original forecast of 3 percent, finance minister Mihaly Varga says. 

- Business confidence in Italy rose in July as the country's lockdown measures continue to ease. Manufacturing confidence climbed to 85.2 percent in July, from 80.2 percent in June. 

- European plane maker Airbus has agreed to pay a higher interest rate on government loans it received from France and Spain to help develop its A350 jet, in a move to appease the U.S. and avoid a transatlantic trade war.  


Friday marked the first day of the new face covering regulations in England. /Reuters

Friday marked the first day of the new face covering regulations in England. /Reuters

It could already be a second wave
 -  María José Sierra, deputy head of Spain's center for health emergencies



Toni Waterman in Brussels

Belgium is tightening its coronavirus measures as the number of new infections in the country spikes.  

Come Saturday, wearing a face mask will be mandatory in more public spaces including shopping streets, markets and busy areas. 

Customers at restaurants and cafes will also be required to wear a mask when not seated and they will be asked to leave contact details to help facilitate contact tracing. The government says that information will be destroyed after 14 days. 

Night shops will have to close at 10 p.m., but bars are allowed to remain open until 1 a.m.  

The new measures have been criticized by virologists as not going far enough. New infections jumped 91 percent last week and the reproduction, or R, number is back above 1 in Belgium. 

Lucy Hough in Frankfurt

Millions of users of Germany's pioneering coronavirus tracing app didn't receive notifications about contact with a new case of the virus because of a design failure. 

This is reportedly due to a glitch with Android systems, which stopped the app's background automatically updating while unopened. 

A spokesperson for the app developer, SAP, admitted there had been issues with an earlier version of the app, but the German Health Ministry insisted the app had worked "at all times."


Rahul Pathak in Madrid

Spain has recorded its highest daily number of new COVID-19 cases since 8 May.

In the 24 hours between Wednesday and Thursday, 971 new cases were recorded – continuing the upward trend over recent days.

The region of Aragon in north-eastern Spain has the highest number of new infections, with 415.

Meanwhile, in neighboring Catalonia, the local government is considering restricting people in Barcelona from going out in the evening. 

It comes as five million people living in and around the city were asked to stay at home on Friday.




Isobel Ewing in Budapest

The coronavirus pandemic and its economic effects have taken a toll on Hungary's sports sector, with 16 "high priority" Olympic sports expecting funding cuts of $19 million this year.

The State Secretariat for Sport says the cuts are justified due to canceled or suspended programs – i.e. the canceled training camps abroad and the rescheduling of international competitions.

It is estimated swimming will receive $3.5 million instead of $4.4 million, kayak-canoe funding will be reduced from $3 million to $2.4 million and wrestling's money will drop from from $2.5 million to $2 million.

"Sports, like all sectors of the economy, have taken their share of epidemiological measures. In view of the emergency situation, taking into account some of the remaining tasks (especially organizing foreign training camps, rescheduling international competitions, etc.), we made a 20 percent reduction in funding to high priority sports in 2020," the State Secretariat of Sport said.


Andrew Wilson in London

Friday marks the completion of Prime Minister Boris Johnson's first year in office in which he's had a child, got divorced, spent time in intensive care and is on to his second opposition Labour Party leader.

New English laws take effect mandating face masks in shops and other enclosed spaces. People from Friday face $120 fines for failure to wear a face-covering in supermarkets, shopping centers, banks, post offices and takeaway food outlets.   

Regarding enforcement of the law, so far neither the Police nor store owners have expressed much enthusiasm for tackling members of the public over non-compliance.

The government has confirmed that everyone aged over 50 will be offered a flu jab this winter, twice the normal number, in a bid to protect hospitals from a combined wave of flu and COVID-19.





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