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25 January 2022

Opinion from Adrian Leopard & Co

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Covid new year review – are we making progress?
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Covid new year review – are we making progress?

Previous Article Previous Article Is government advice over Christmas parties actually sensible? Given the choice would you have parties or Christmas?

With escalating new cases throughout Europe it look’s like we are in for the long haul

We have been quiet for a month, taking the time to see how things are changing over a longer period.

Now that we have reached the new year of 2022 at last, it is a good moment to assess where we are. Have we made progress against this disease? Is society better equipped to deal with it and indeed is society dealing with it?

December 2021 has seen a big change – one that was foreseen although no one new when. We had a new variant – Omicron. It started, almost apologetically, in South Africa. Indeed the doctor who discovered it thought that the rest of the world was over-reacting. As it turns out she could not have been further from the truth. Not only has this variant romped ahead, it has produced record breaking new case figures across the world.

In the UK recorded cases are now running at well over a million a week! As was to be expected hospitalisations have suddenly taken a sharp turn upwards and the only breath of fresh air is that deaths happily seem to have been contained at a low level.

But it is clear that our ability to predict what is going on is far from an exact science. Who would have thought that France with its somewhat strict measures of covid passports and restricted places would have started to record more cases than the UK?

And in the UK we have a total disparity between the approach of the government for England and those of the devolved nations. No restrictions at all – yet! Can that really go on? Apart from anything else it is beginning to cause migrations of population across borders to avoid restrictions in the devolved nations. We have the same issue in Europe with Holland exercising a strict policy of closures so the people are going off to Belgium to shop and get their entertainment.

The bit which is so extraordinary is the fact that so many people would prefer to see no restrictions and a complete free-for-all than take sensible measures to keep out of trouble, which is clearly strongly advocated by the medical profession. Indeed there are real cracks now in the united front formerly put forward by the medics and the government. Government says go and have a nice day while the medics say stay at home unless it is really necessary to go out.

This has produced so many people self-isolating – again – that businesses are unable to function on all cylinders anyway so to some extent we have a people-created semi-lock-down because they quite simply keep on taking risks with their health and that of everyone around them. So with businesses having now to close voluntarily because they do not have enough staff or enough clients, the damage to the economy is taking place on its own without any help from government. How many Christmas parties were cancelled and at what cost to business?

2021 started very bleakly. Whilst the Prime Minister may indeed say our position today is incomparable, he is not right in every respect. With 2.5 million inhabitants in the UK with covid and new cases running at over a million per week, I think this can fairly be dubbed “bleak” and with vaccinations proving only partly effective this could go on like a merry go round indefinitely. And what if the next new variant is less benign than Omicron? Then the ever-decreasing circles will be very self-evident.

And to think that some thought we had had the “all clear” back in July.

So we wish you a happy new year and prosperous 2022 but we do not think it will come easily.

Adrian Leopard New Year’s Day 2022

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Adrian Leopard & Company is the trading name of Alderney Offshore Ltd, a company registered in Alderney, Channel Islands number 1220.

Address P O Box 1027, Alderney GY9 3AS

Registered Office Seldomin, Longis Road, Alderney GY9 3YB.

Adrian Leopard & Co is represented in the UK by 3CL (UK) Ltd trading as Adrian Leopard Associates.

Telephone enquiries may be made on 08449-4-08449 or 01684-230360.

E Mail [email protected]

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