Australia announces financial aid for Sydney Covid-19 outbreak

Sydney, Australia, Jul 13 (EFE).- Australian announced Tuesday additional financial aid for workers and businesses affected by the confinement imposed in Sydney, accounting for more than 20 percent of the 25 million inhabitants of the country, for an outbreak of Covid-19 linked to the delta variant.

“The (state) outbreak of New South Wales has proven to be more severe and more dangerous,” Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison told reporters in Sydney, where 89 new coronavirus cases and one death were reported Tuesday.

Health authorities said they have not yet managed to stop community transmissions as a result of this outbreak, detected in mid-June and that has registered more than 700 local infections and two deaths.

The confinement in Sydney and surrounding cities, which affects about 6 million people, began on Jun. 26 and ends Friday, but after measures announced by Morrison it is assumed it will be extended a second time.

“The numbers speak for themselves. Tomorrow we will have more to say about it,” the head of the New South Wales government, Gladys Berejiklian, said at the press conference, highlighting the strategy of completely eliminating the virus from her territory.

To mitigate the impact of restrictions, from the fourth week of confinement, workers who have lost 20 or more hours of work per week will receive about AUD 600 dollars ($ 449) from authorities.

Meanwhile, people who stopped working between eight and less than 20 hours will receive a lower amount. Residents outside areas declared critical may also request aid if they meet requirements.

The grants, funded between the federal and state governments, will also be offered to companies with an annual turnover of between AUD 75,000 and AUD 50 million, a 30 percent drop in turnover.

Individual entrepreneurs will receive AUD 1,000 weekly, under the government announcement, which will inject AUD 17.35 million for mental health services in New South Wales.

Australia has registered more than 31,200 cases of Covid-19 since the beginning of the pandemic, including 912 deaths, and has tried to accelerate its vaccination campaign. This was delayed with respect to the government schedule and has only been able to administer the full dosage to less than 10 per percent of its population. EFE


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