Statistics on the dynamics of retail sales in the euro area in February were better than the forecast of analysts. Sales increased by 3% compared to the previous month, with forecast growth of 1.5%.
On an annualized basis, retail sales declined 2.9%. Analysts had expected them to decline by 5.4%. Sales of goods belonging to the non-food group increased by 6.8%. Fuel sales in the euro area rose by 3.7%. At the same time, sales of food products decreased by 1.1%. Retail sales in the European Union increased by 2.9% month-on-month in February. Compared to the same month in 2020, they decreased by 2.2%.
The leaders in terms of sales growth in monthly terms were such countries as Austria, Slovenia, and Italy. The largest decline was recorded in Malta.
Compared to February of the previous year, the highest growth rate of retail sales was observed in Belgium, Austria, and Croatia. At the same time, Portugal, Slovakia, and Malta showed the highest rates of decline in retail sales.
This was announced by the head of the Hungarian Foreign Ministry after a meeting in Budapest with the Slovak Deputy Prime Minister. Earlier, the Slovak regulator said that their vaccine doses do not match the samples that were considered by the European regulator and The Lancet magazine. RDIF refutes this information.
Slovakia’s Deputy Prime Minister Igor Matovic asked Hungary to conduct an expert examination of the Sputnik V vaccine, as Bratislava does not have the necessary laboratories. Budapest agreed to help. Earlier, there were publications in the media, according to which the batch of Russian vaccine delivered to Slovakia differs from the one described in The Lancet magazine. The Russian Direct Investment Fund called this information fake and demanded that Bratislava return the drug.
Hungary became the first country in the European Union, which, without waiting for the decision of the European regulator, allowed the use of “Sputnik V”. The Russian vaccine has been inoculated there since February. Slovakia, also a member of the European Union, decided to follow the example of Hungary, but this led to a political crisis and the resignation of Igor Matovic as prime minister-although he remained in the government.
A new scandal broke out when the Slovak media reported that the Slovak State Institute for Drug Control was unable to conduct a full audit of Sputnik due to the fact that it was not provided with the necessary amount of data. In addition, the vaccine delivered to the country is different from the one that is known from publications in scientific publications. In the media, there was unofficial information about two forms of the drug — liquid and dry, with different storage conditions.
The RDIF responded to all this. The Foundation has asked the Slovak government to return the coronavirus vaccine so that it can be used in other countries.
In Austria, during the vaccination campaign, the number of deaths after vaccination against coronavirus increased from 55 to 63.
According to the Federal Agency for Health Safety, 57 people died after being vaccinated with the Pfizer vaccine.
Three deaths were recorded after the Moderna vaccination and three more after AstraZeneca.
At the same time, experts say that the connection of deaths with the used vaccines has not been established. Non-vaccine-related health complications can occur among the most vulnerable older populations.
Now the question of whether there is a link between deaths and vaccines are being studied in detail.
Also recently, we wrote that in Hong Kong, two people who suffered from chronic diseases died after being vaccinated against coronavirus.
Also, a woman from Slovakia died shortly after she was vaccinated against coronavirus with a drug from AstraZeneca.
Slovak Finance Minister Eduard Heger met with President Zuzana Caputova to inform her about the upcoming reconstruction of the government after the crisis caused by the purchase of a Russian vaccine.
This is reported by Aktuality.
From the results of their negotiations, it became clear that the composition of the new government will be known on Tuesday.
“Tomorrow morning I will come to the president with the current Prime Minister to perform the act of resignation,” Heger said.
After the talks, the minister also said that he accepted the proposal to form a new government. “I will also submit a list of the new government to the president,” he said.
The future prime minister does not want to reveal who will be on it yet.
“I want to keep all the procedures as they should be. Therefore, first, the president will learn about them, and then we will familiarize the public with them, ” Heger added.
Recall that on Sunday, Prime Minister of Slovakia Igor Matovic announced that he would leave his post and exchange positions with Finance Minister Eduard Heger.
The third wave of the pandemic in Germany may be “the most severe,” said Lothar Wheeler, head of the Robert Koch Institute. According to him, the next rampant coronavirus in the country is caused by the spread of the “British” strain of infection.
A couple of weeks ago, Wheeler acknowledged the onset of the third wave of the pandemic in Germany. The statement was made on the basis of the growing dynamics of coronavirus infections in the country.
Scientists of the institute noted that in January and February in Germany, there was a downward trend in COVID-19 diseases. In March, the situation changed. The indicators for the infection of citizens with the infection began to grow again. Experts then suggested that a new strain of the virus, which is characterized by a higher rate of spread, began to rage in the country.
Last week, the representative of the European Commission, Dana Spinant, said that European countries are covered by the third wave of the pandemic. According to her, somewhere the infection spreads gradually, somewhere at a rapid pace. Spirant stressed that the current situation suggests the need to speed up vaccination of the population. The statement of the representative of the European Commission was made against the background of an increase in the number of infections in Finland, Poland, France, Estonia, Italy, Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Belgium, and other countries.