Coronavirus - 16 February
16 February 2021
• 750,000 UK households behind in rent
• Norway to lift national restrictions
• Some schools in Scotland to reopen on Monday
• Singapore announces $8bn spending programme
• Poll shows only 64% of Australians to ‘definitely’ take vaccine
• In the UK 16% of state school pupils were being taught on school premises on 11 February - the same proportion as the week before, according to figures from the Department for Education. Some 24% of primary school pupils were on-site last week, a slight rise on the week before (23%).
• Pupils in Scotland will start a phased and gradual return to school from Monday. All children in P1 to P3 and those at pre-school to return from 22 February.
• Four passengers at Birmingham Airport have been fined £10,000 for failing to declare they had travelled from a high-risk "red list" country.
• An extra 1.7mn people will be asked to shield in England, the government has announced, taking the total to 4mn.
• Singapore has announced a spending programme worth over $8bn to help businesses and households recover from the pandemic. The city-state suffered its biggest ever economic contraction last year, seeing GDP shrinking by 5.4%, with tourism and aviation particularly badly hit.
• Some 750,000 UK households were behind on housing costs last month according to the Resolution Foundation.
• The curfew in the Netherlands must be lifted immediately, the preliminary relief judge in The Hague concluded. The curfew has been established on the basis of an emergency law, which states that the Cabinet can introduce rules in an emergency without consulting the House of Representatives and the Senate.
• Italy has postponed the reopening of ski resorts until 5 March.
• Norway will lift all the extra restrictions imposed on the capital region on Thursday, meaning essential stores located inside shopping centres could reopen and restaurants could again serve alcohol with food if the local authorities allow it.
• Hong Kong will reopen sports and entertainment facilities and extend dining hours from 18 February.
• A poll in Australia has shown just 64% of Australians will “definitely” get a vaccine while 27% are unsure and 9% will not, according to government research.
• South Africa has reopened its major land borders with neighbouring countries after closing them last month.
• Australia’s regulator has approved the AstraZeneca vaccine.