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Your COVID-19 Toolkit

The impacts of the pandemic caused by COVID-19 are being felt across industries globally. In times of uncertainty and fear of the unknown, it is now more important than ever for resources and help to be readily available. Whether it is implementing business continuity plans, adjusting value propositions to align with the evolving crisis, strengthening strategic muscles or preparing for post pandemic, we are here to help.

Insights

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BBC News

South African frustration over Omicron research

Researchers say people outside the country did not believe their research; Spain wants to treat coronavirus like seasonal flu. And: a court in Australia explains why it allowed Novak Djokovic to be kicked out.

British PM under attack in parliament for lockdown violations

Britain's Prime Minister has come under sustained attack in parliament today over allegations that parties at his residence broke Covid lockdown rules, France’s education minister is facing calls to resign after announcing Covid protocol for schoo…

Research in Israel shows fourth doses do not stop Omicron infections

The government says it will continue the programme for people over 60. Also: Quebec is banning alcohol sales to unvaccinated people to encourage them to get jabbed; and thousands of hamsters are being culled in Hong Kong over concerns of animal to hu…

China tells population to stop ordering from overseas

Beijing fears items delivered from overseas could spread the Omicron variant. Also: tsunami-hit Tonga fears foreign aid could bring coronavirus to the country; and Greece begins to fine people over 60 who haven’t been vaccinated.

Djokovic deported from Australia

Novak Djokovic is on a flight from Australia after a court ruled the tennis star should not be allowed stay in the country. Federal judges upheld the government's decision to cancel his visa on the basis that his presence risked encouraging anti-vacc…

The Economist | Business

Drinking in the office

Don’t ban, don’t binge and don’t badger…

Unilever’s £50bn health cheque

Purchasing GSK’s consumer-health division may be hard to swallow…

Where next for air travel?

New covid variants stall aviation’s upward flight path…

What is ExxonMobil’s new climate strategy worth?

Big oil’s most reluctant decarboniser lays out its green plan…

Making sense of the East-West divide in tech

A tale of two surprisingly different Turkish delights…

The Economist | International

Divorce in the rich world is getting less nasty

Reforms are making it cheaper, quicker and a bit less adversarial…

Do tips make for better service?

The evidence is mixed—and the practice varies widely across the world…

The world’s religions face a post-pandemic reckoning

Many need to sell their property; some branches will have to merge…

Are video games really addictive?

A revolution in games-makers’ business models has bolstered the case…

The Omicron variant advances at an incredible rate

Even if infections prove mild, that speed will have grave consequences…

The Guardian

Covid live: UK reports 330 more deaths and over 100,000 cases; France to announce timetable for easing curbs tonight

Latest UK figures come as England prepares to lift remaining Covid restrictions; France to unveil timetable for easing restrictions at 7pmNHS England Covid absences fall amid signs staffing crisis is easing‘Dangerous’ to lift self-isolation rules…

Biden warns Russia will ‘pay a heavy price’ if Putin launches Ukraine invasion – live

President clarifies comments from Wednesday on Ukraine-RussiaVolodymyr Zelenskiy criticizes Biden’s ‘minor incursions’ remarkDemocrats fail to advance voting rights bill in SenateSign up to receive First Thing – our daily briefing by emailJoe…

Tory MP claims No 10 ‘blackmailing’ rebels as Wakeford says funding was threatened before he defected – live

Latest updates: Christian Wakeford says he was threatened with funding cut; William Wragg urges alleged victims to speak to policeTory defector says whips told him to back PM or lose school fundsMinisters attempting to blackmail opponents of PM, alle…

Canada’s Prince Andrew high school announces plan to change name

School attempt to distance itself from the growing controversy surrounding the Duke of YorkA Canadian high school named after the Duke of York has announced plans to rename itself, in an attempt to distance itself from the growing controversy surroun…

Pure heaven, but also hell: my trek to find the Disappearing Tarn

In the mountain by Hobart a lake appears just after heavy rain, then vanishes. Features editor Lucy Clark recommends a story that takes us on a mysterious searchYou can read the original article here: Pure heaven, but also hell: my trek to find the D…

TechCrunch

Russian c.bank proposes banning cryptocurrencies, crypto mining

Representations of virtual cryptocurrencies are seen in this illustration taken November 28, 2021. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration/File PhotoRussia's central bank on Thursday proposed banning the use and mining of cryptocurrencies on Russian ter…

EXCLUSIVE TikTok owner ByteDance's revenue growth slowed to 70% in 2021 - sources

Tik Tok logos are seen on smartphones in front of a displayed ByteDance logo in this illustration taken November 27, 2019. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration/File PhotoTikTok owner ByteDance saw its  revenue grow  70% year on year to about $58…

Microsoft-Activision deal gives merger speculators a new darling

Microsoft logo is seen on a smartphone placed on displayed Activision Blizzard logo in this illustration taken January 18, 2022. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/IllustrationHedge funds, which make profits by speculating on precarious takeovers, got a treat this w…

AUSTRIA ADDS A LOTTERY TO COVID VACCINE MANDATE

A doctor vaccinates a person with a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine in Vienna, Austria April 26, 2021. REUTERS/Lisi NiesnerAustria's conservative government said  Thursday it was launching a national lottery to encourage holdouts to…

CHEAP VERSION OF MERCK COVID PILL TO BE MADE FOR POORER NATIONS

An experimental COVID-19 treatment pill, called molnupiravir and being developed by Merck & Co Inc and Ridgeback Biotherapeutics LP, is seen in this undated handout photo released by Merck & Co Inc and obtained by Reuters May 17, 2021. Merck…

Wall Street Journal

Probe Blames Pope Benedict XVI for Failures on Clerical Sex Abuse as Archbishop

The future pope mishandled four cases of clerical sex abuse during his tenure as an archbishop in Germany, according to an inquiry that faults him for failures to investigate and discipline abusers.

Ukraine's Foreign Minister Says Biden Comment Underestimates Russia's Intention

Dmytro Kuleba responded to a comment from the U.S. president, in which he suggested that Western nations weren’t in tandem on how to respond to Russia in the event of a “minor incursion” on Ukraine.

Havana Syndrome Unlikely Caused by Russia, Other U.S. Foes, CIA Says

Agency concludes that other medical conditions, stress or unexplained factors could be behind the ailments that have been reported in roughly 1,000 personnel.

Erdogan Meets El Salvador's Bitcoin-Boosting Leader

The Turkish government has taken a restrictive approach to cryptocurrencies in recent years, but analysts expect El Salvaror’s Nayib Bukele to advocate for the use of crypto during the meeting.

China Cuts Benchmark Rates to Bolster Flagging Economy

The country’s central bank stepped in to support a slowing economy that has been weighed down by a slump in the property market during a politically important year for leader Xi Jinping.

Wired

Smartphone Cameras Might Soon Capture Polarization Data

Normal cameras can process color and light. New tech from Metalenz collects information that could help your phone better understand the world around you.

Scientists Are Racing to Understand the Fury of Tonga’s Volcano

The Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha'apai volcanic eruption and tsunami that have devastated Tonga are unlike anything volcanologists have seen before.

Are Rhythm Games Ready for a Comeback?

Big publishers stepped away from the genre that spawned Guitar Hero and Rock Band. But a few small studios—and hungry fans—are keeping the dream alive.

Why Big Tech Companies Have Been Quiet on Texas’ Abortion Law

As the anniversary of Roe v. Wade nears, pressure is building from advocacy groups and workers themselves.

Are You Sure You Know What a Photograph Is?

Once, I thought I had a definition of photography. Today, surrounded by thermal cameras, lidar, 3D printers, and AI software, I am not so sure.

New York Times

U.N. Approves Israeli Measure to Condemn Holocaust Denial

The resolution was aimed at combating what Israel and other countries have described as an epidemic of disinformation about the murder of nearly six million Jews and millions of others by the Nazis.

The U.S. Bombed a Dam in Syria That Was on a ‘No-Strike’ List

A military report warned that striking the giant structure could cause tens of thousands of deaths.

This Ancient Brew Has Retro Appeal in South Korea

Makgeolli, a rice wine made by Korean farmers for centuries, has become a cosmopolitan sensation over the past decade. The buzz grew during Covid lockdowns.

On Ukraine and Russia, Biden Flusters European Allies by Stating the Obvious

After the president laid bare divisions over Russian meddling in Ukraine, his administration scrambled to get on the same page with European allies.

‘She Was Just Going for a Run’: Anger in Ireland Over Teacher’s Murder

Ashling Murphy, a 23-year-old first-grade teacher, was out jogging when she was attacked. Her death has prompted outrage over women’s safety.

South China Morning Post

9 seconds apart: how Omicron could have spread from 2 people to a Hong Kong kindergarten teacher in a tunnel

It could take just a brief encounter in an MTR station for the Omicron variant to transmit from one person to another, Hong Kong health officials said on Thursday.Contact tracing of a previously unlinked, positive case found possible transmission pat…

Merck’s Covid-19 pill to be made by 11 countries for developing nations in UN deal

A United Nations-backed organisation announced Thursday that it has signed agreements with more than two dozen generic drug makers to produce versions of Merck’s Covid-19 pill to supply 105 developing countries.The Medicines Patent Pool said the de…

New Hong Kong Bar Association chief draws line in sand on political issues, but says body will continue to speak out on rule of law

The new chairman of Hong Kong’s Bar Association has moved to immediately draw a line in the sand on political issues, after he and two other low-profile barristers took over the leadership reins of the outspoken legal body which has been a target o…

Omicron Hong Kong: ethnic minority leaders urge members to get tested as Sham Shui Po cluster grows, but chief imam warns ‘no community group should be blamed’

Community leaders from ethnic minority groups in Hong Kong’s Sham Shui Po are urging members to get tested for Covid-19, as a growing Omicron cluster in the area has led to suspended religious gatherings and activities.The district has become a new…

China set to hire more ‘virtual’ workers after property developer China Vanke names AI robot a top employee for 2021

The growth potential for artificial intelligence (AI) applications in China appears to remain strong, following property developer China Vanke’s recent move to name its in-house-developed virtual debt collector as a top employee for 2021.The softwa…

World Health Organization

Human infection with avian influenza A (H5N8) – the Russian Federation

On 18 February 2021, the National IHR Focal Point for the Russian Federation notified WHO of detection of avian influenza A(H5N8) in seven human clinical specimens. These are the first reported detection of avian influenza A(H5N8) in humans. Positive…

Ebola virus disease – Guinea

On 14 February 2021, the Ministry of Health (MoH) of Guinea informed WHO of a cluster of Ebola Virus…

Rift Valley fever – Kenya

Rift Valley fever (RVF) has been reported in Kenya in humans in Isiolo and Mandera counties and in…

Ebola virus disease – Democratic Republic of the Congo

On 7 February 2021, the Minister of Health of the Democratic Republic of the Congo declared an outbreak of Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) after the laboratory confirmation of one case in North Kivu Province. The case was an adult female living in Biena He…

Influenza A (H3N2) variant virus – United States of America

On 13 January, 2021, a child under 18 years of age in Wisconsin developed respiratory disease. A respiratory specimen was collected on 14 January. Real-time reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) testing conducted at the Wisconsin S…

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