News digest: Green passes to be launched on Saturday, minister asks people not to sign up right away

Three other Delta variant cases confirmed in Slovakia. Travelling within the EU should be easier thanks to Green Passes. People in tourism optimistic about the upcoming season.

(Source: / Hej,ty)

Good evening. Check out our Thursday, June 24 edition of Today in Slovakia to catch up on the main news of the day in less than five minutes. We wish you a pleasant read.

Green Passes will be ready to use on Saturday

An app called GreenPass that will make travelling across the EU easier should be launched in Slovakia on June 26.

Health Minister Vladimír Lengvarský believes that everyone will be able to access GreenPass within several days if they need it. User should be able to download vaccination certificates, confirmation of recovery from Covid and PCR test results on the app.

Lengvarský asked people not to sign up for the app during the first hours after it is launched if it is not necessary.

“If two million people sign up on the first day and check whether it works, it will not work,” he told the media.

People in tourism optimistic about summer season

Tourism in Slovakia has experienced some of its hardest times. The data of the Statistics Office confirms that travel agencies in Slovakia lost 88 percent of their clients due to the pandemic last year.

Some holidaymakers purchased holidays in the winter, though in the first quarter of the year, the second wave of the pandemic was peaking in Slovakia and severe restrictions were in place.

“We have seen an increased interest in foreign destinations since the beginning of April,” said Katarína Šuchterová from the Pelikán travel agency. Popular destinations include Spain, which makes up almost one-fifth of the sales of the travel agency, and Italy.

Greece and Malta are also popular and travel agencies are focusing on green countries.

Coronavirus and vaccination news

  • Three other cases of the Delta variant have been confirmed in Slovakia. These people have not been vaccinated. They were asymptomatic and arrived in the country from outside the EU. After arrival, they went into home quarantine. A total of four cases of the Delta variant have been confirmed in Slovakia.
  • Hungary cancelled controls on its inner Schengen borders. It is possible to enter Hungary from Slovakia without limits with the exception of those arriving via plane. Learn the latest travel restrictions in other countries here.
  • 64 doctors signed up for vaccination in their outpatient’s departments on the first day. If someone wants to get vaccinated at their GP’s office, they can register directly via their GP. Vaccination at GP offices should start on July 1. It will be possible to sign up from the first dose only, so those who have received the first vaccine dose in a vaccination centre should get the second dose there too.
  • About 100 mobile testing sites should operate from July 1. Most of the currently operating testing sites will close due to the expiration of their contract.

Photo of the day

People are not the only ones that suffer in hot weather. Inhabitants of Bratislava Zoo got a refreshing shower and juicy fruit to help them cool down.

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Opinion for today

Our American friends have a name for this. They call it a ‘mulligan’.

It’s what you get after you’ve made such an embarrassing balls-up of something that everyone agrees to pretend it didn’t happen. Then you get another go.

Now the Supreme Court has decided that they should get a mulligan, writes James Thomson about last week's verdict in the Kuciak murder trial.

The wrong way to do right Read more 

In other news

  • The state will pay the European Commission a fine of €56 million for a cartel made up of six construction companies in a highway tender 15 years ago. Doprastav, a company led by the people of Miroslav Výboh, and the Strabag company of the Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska, who paid a very small fine and still earned money on state contracts, will come out the proven fraud without a scratch.
  • Slovakia will receive €33 million in aid after Brexit. The European Parliament and the Council of the EU allocated more money to Slovakia; the Commission originally proposed €24 million. Some of the funds will be available this year and may also focus on the reintegration of Slovaks who had to leave Great Britain. (Euractiv)
  • The worldwide shortage of semiconductors will once again interrupt the production of SUV models in Volkswagen, Bratislava. The production will not run from Monday, June 28, to Wednesday, June 30. The production of small city vehicles will not be affected and will run according to the production plan.
  • Žilina's Kia will stop production on Friday. "The interruption of production at the Kia Slovakia plant was proposed due to the ever-changing restrictions related to COVID-19 in other countries, which have an impact on the cabling supply chain in Tunisia," the spokesman explained.
  • Significantly more men than women committed suicide last year. One-third of these cases were influenced by alcohol or other addictive substances. The number of people who attempted suicide did not grow last year.
  • Drivers should count on the entire closure of the D1 highway near Triblavina for several nights. It will be closed from 23:00 to 6:00 from June 25 to June 27 as well as from July 2 to July 4.
  • The largest relocation in the history of office real estate is being prepared in Slovakia. IBM is moving from four buildings to a completely new property, Nove Apollo in Bratislava. The building will be completed in 2022, and the relocation itself is planned for the first half of 2023. (SITA)

Do not miss on today

Q&A: How to stay safe around bears Read more  Roads from Záhorie to Bratislava are congested. What are some alternative routes? Read more  Bratislava to host multi-day festival on last weekend of June Read more  Pensions of former communist officials to be slashed Read more  Largest Slovak theatre with seven floors and more than 2,000 rooms Read more 

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