Latest Updates on COVID 19 and EU initiatives as received from ORGALIM
1. Data on the geographic distribution of COVID-19 cases
On 6 May, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control published an update on the geographic distribution of COVID-19 cases in Europe and worldwide.
2.European Commission Spring 2020 Economic Forecast:
On 6 May, the Commission published its Spring 2020 Economic Forecast. The report estimates that the euro area economy will contract by a 7¾% in 2020 and grow by 6¼% in 2021. The EU economy is forecast to contract by 7½% in 2020 and grow by around 6% in 2021. Growth projections for the EU and euro area have been revised down by around nine percentage points compared to the Autumn 2019 Economic Forecast. The shock to the EU economy is symmetric: the pandemic has hit all Member States. However, both the drop in output in 2020 (from -4¼% in Poland to -9¾% in Greece) and the strength of the rebound in 2021 are expected to differ quite widely.
3. Contact tracing for COVID-19
On 6 May, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control published a technical report on current evidence, options for scale-up and an assessment of resources needed. It develops the following argument that contact tracing is an effective public health measure for the control of COVID-19.
The prompt identification and management of the contacts of COVID-19 cases makes it possible to rapidly identify secondary cases that may arise after transmission from the primary cases. This will enable the interruption of further onward transmission. Contact tracing, in conjunction with robust testing and surveillance systems, is central to control strategies during de-escalation.
Contact tracing has been a key part of the response in several Asian countries that have successfully reduced case numbers.It is possible to scale up contact tracing by adapting traditional contact tracing approaches to available local resources and by using a number of resource-saving measures.
This document outlines a number of resource measures including the use of well-trained non-public-health staff and volunteers; repurposing existing resources such as call centres; reducing the intensity of contact follow-up and using new technologies such as contact management software and mobile apps.
4.European Parliament Services Briefing
On 6 May the European Parliament services published a new issue of their Briefing on “What Think Tanks are Thinking”: while still assessing the immediate impacts of the crisis and examining various ‘exit strategies’, analysts are also shifting their focus towards identifying the medium- and long-term legacy of the crisis, the likely shape of the ‘world after coronavirus’, and the best policies for the future.
5.European Parliament Weekly Economic Briefing
On 5 May, the European Parliament services issued a new set of “weekly picks” providing a summary of some recent analyses of the economic and financial effects of the COVID-19 crisis and some policy recommendations made by scholars and public or private institutions.
6.European Parliament Weekly Table
On 5 May, the European Parliament published a weekly update (at 4 may 2020) of its table of measures taken by the EU or the Euro Area (EA) to fight the economic, financial and social effects of the COVID-19 crisis.
7.Reopening of airports
On 4 May, the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) published its Safety Information Bulletin (SIB) 2020-07, providing guidance to airports to prepare for a return to normal operations. This is part of a wider project to offer guidance across the various aviation domains.