TODAY IN SLOVAKIA

Largest employer in Spiš suspends production for ten days (news digest)

Faculty of Medicine holds its first online final exams, while medical staff in Bojnice wear gas masks to protect themselves. Your overview of news from Slovakia on April 8, 2020.

One of the Roma settlements closed due to the coronavirus is Bystrany.One of the Roma settlements closed due to the coronavirus is Bystrany. (Source: TASR)

This is your overview of news from April 9.
For all news about the coronavirus in Slovakia click here.
Read more about the measures currently in place in Slovakia. Stricter rules apply for Easter holidays, starting as of midnight April 8.

Coronavirus in Slovakia (updates)

- There are 19 more people positively diagnosed with the coronavirus, while 1,671 tests were negative. In the meantime, seven more people have recovered from the illness. See the more detained statistics for Slovakia.

- As many as 251 people will die of the coronavirus in Slovakia, with the death toll increasing by seven to 10 deaths a day between April 17 and May 8, according to the team of scientists from The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) based in the city of Seattle, USA. They have designed a detailed model of the development of coronavirus in individual countries. As it is only an estimate, the numbers could change. (SITA)

- Google has published the search trends in Slovakia before Easter. In late March, people searched mostly for “Easter in masks”, while in the first week of April, they inquired about the restrictions of movement. Slovaks are also searching for recipes without yeast and with mother dough. (Denník N)

- Roma organisations have called the testing in marginalised communities absurd and expressed concern that it will only incite hatred against them. However, the Government’s Proxy for Roma Communities, Andrea Bučková, said that the risk is not in ethnicity, but rather the conditions to which people with a history of travel had returned. (SITA)

- This Easter will be about hope, said President Zuzana Čaputová during a special address broadcast by the public-service RTVS on April 9. She called on everyone to observe the coronavirus measures which will help us return to the way things were before March.

This holiday will be about hope. About hoping for good development, a safe world around us where human contact will bring us closer, not divide us. We’re thirsty for hope and need to quench this thirst.

President Zuzana Čaputová in a special address

Coronavirus measures in Slovakia

- The Banská Bystrica Region opened a quarantine centre for people working in the front line, i.e. medical staff, paramedics, the employees of social care facilities and other professions, in Zvolen.

- The Faculty Hospital with Policlinic in Žilina has opened a pandemic pavilion where the first two patients suspected of being infected with the coronavirus have been hospitalised. The hospital re-profiled 46 beds in the first phase. Six beds can be connected to artificial lung ventilators. (MY Žilina)

- The hospital in Bojnice (Trenčín Region) is struggling with a lack of protective equipment. Instead, they are using gasmasks from the local warehouse.

- Comenius University’s Faculty of Medicine launched the very first online final exams. The committee is sitting in the rooms at the faculty, following strict hygiene rules, while students are at home.

Coronavirus in business

- The ministers of finance, economy and labour announced state aid for large companies. “We have agreed in government that if there are support schemes for small and medium-sized companies, there will also be some for large companies,” said Economy Minister Richard Sulík (SaS).

- Embraco Slovakia, the largest employer in the Spiš Region, will suspend production for 10 days, starting on April 10. The reason is the lack of components from Italian suppliers. (SITA)

- Foxconn Slovakia will resume production after Easter, on April 14. The company suspended production due to the coronavirus crisis on March 23. (SITA)

- Business service centres have addressed the government in connection with the coronavirus pandemic. They demand higher flexibility in employment through amending the Labour Code, changes in conditions for home office workers, the concurrence of salary and a payment for the care of a family member (OČR) by Sociálna Poisťovňa or the three-month delay of payroll tax payment. (TASR)

News updates from Slovakia

- Ingrid Brocková has been appointed new state secretary of the Foreign Affairs Ministry. The long-time diplomat has been serving as the ambassador and permanent representative of Slovakia to the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

- President Zuzana Čaputová granted amnesty to 20-year-old Dávid Bako, sentenced to two years for murdering his father. He committed the crime at the age of 17, after many years of cruelty to both him and his mother. (TASR)

- The trial of Marian Kočner, Tomáš Szabó and Alena Zsuzsová who face charges in the case of the murder of investigative journalist Ján Kuciak and his fiancée Martina Kušnírová, and other crimes, will be held with limited presence of the public and the media. It will be possible to make a voice recording of the proceedings. The trial continues on April 15 and 16.

- NAKA have detained a man who held a weapon and threatened PM Igor Matovič in a video. They also seized the gun. (Facebook)

- The Government Office has cancelled the accreditation of a reporter of the Hlavné Správy website, known for spreading fake news and conspiracy theories, for damaging its property. Shortly before the start of the press conference, he came to the speakers’ table and damaged the inscription there. (Omediach.com)

Business updates from Slovakia

- Unlike the previous month, industrial production in Slovakia decreased by 1.5 percent year-on-year in February 2020. After seasonal adjustment, it dropped by 0.7 percent in monthly terms. Conversely, construction output rose for the second month in a row in February. It increased by 7.6 percent year-on-year to €352.4 million. After seasonal adjustment, it rose by 1.3 percent compared with January 2020. (Statistics Office)

- The total export of goods amounted to €6.6 billion in February 2020, down by 1.1 percent year-on-year. The total import of goods rose by 2.1 percent year-on-year to €6.5 billion. The foreign trade balance was in surplus, amounting to €73 million, down by €208.6 million compared with the corresponding period last year. (Statistics Office)

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