26 May 2022

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Covid spreading alarmingly across Europe
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Covid spreading alarmingly across Europe

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Is it a race against time? Can we avoid Christmas being cancelled?

Europe is getting into a real state over the spread of covid and new measures are being taken more or less everywhere to try and stop it.

But is all of this just futile gestures to try and contain the virus or can it be stopped or slowed?

It is a strange state of affairs but the UK is just about the only place where there are no measures in force and yet, whilst the rate of new cases is high, we do seem to be on a relative plateau but even those cases are rising again, but not as fast as everywhere else.

But all across Europe we are beginning to see real panic measures being implemented with Austria having led the way and brought in a new lockdown – and not without a fight on the part of the people. That is perhaps the strangest aspect of it – whose side are the people on? Do they think that the government in imposing safety measures is against their interests?

And how serious it must be to hear that The Netherlands are exporting some of their sick to German hospitals because they no longer have any room. This is clearly no joke.

The latest daily new cases figure in the UK is 42,484, a smidge down from yesterday but showing a rising seven day rollover of 297,658 new cases. 300,000 looks like being on the cards tomorrow.

An interesting statistic which is not often talked about is the daily rate of tests in the UK. This is running at somewhere in excess of 800,000 a day. This is a huge figure but when you try and read the data on the government website about tests it is extremely difficult to determine what the site is trying to tell you! If you are feeling clever, have a go yourself here:

It is not entirely straightforward as to which tests are and are not included in the numbers and of course not everyone reports their lateral flow tests so it is rather difficult to keep a check on it. But what on earth must all this testing be costing? It is quite difficult to ascertain the costs to the NHS of a lateral flow test but it looks like it could be between £5 and £30 each! Let us assume for a moment it is £5, that suggests testing could be costing the NHS perhaps £5 million a day! That nice box conveniently sent to you through the post with 7 tests in could be costing the government £35 plus carriage. There is going to be a very big bill by the end of all of this.

So to the future, will there be yet more lockdowns across Europe? How is this all going to affect European travel and holidays as Christmas approaches? Will Christmas be cancelled?

And where will the UK fit into this scenario? Are the numbers going to just keep on rising or will the government eventually decide that enough is enough and action has to be taken to contain the spread? Will that elusive Plan B suddenly be there just when we don’t want it?

The Christmas markets have closed in Austria; others are following. But not yet in the UK but if you do visit one, take care – wear a mask and maintain your social distancing – it really does still matter. Go here to read all about it:

Adrian Leopard     23-11-21

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

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

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