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Weekly COVID-19 cases in England decline for first time since July

Weekly COVID-19 cases in England decline for first time since July

FILE PHOTO: A council worker sprays a social distancing marker on the ground in Oldham amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, Britain July 29, 2020. REUTERS/Phil Noble

LONDON: About 6,115 new people tested positive for COVID-19 in England in the week to Aug 19, down 8 per cent on the week before and showing the first decrease since the start of July, figures from the government's test and trace operation showed on Thursday (Aug 27).

A higher total of 7,941 people were transferred to the contact tracing system in the week, in part due to an operational delay in the prior week.

Of these, 72.6 per cent were reached and asked to provide information about their contacts, compared to 79 per cent in the previous week, the government said.

According to an industry body forecast on Wednesday, Britain's economy will lose about £22 billion (US$29 billion) this year on the coronavirus-induced collapse of global travel, which could imperil 3 million jobs.

International visitor spending could plunge by 78 per cent from 2019, equating to a loss of £60 million a day or £420 million a week, the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) predicted in a key report.

The nation's economy shrank by one-fifth in the second quarter, more than any European neighbour, as the lockdown plunged the country into its deepest recession on record.

Tourists remain reluctant to visit because Britain is the European country worst hit by the coronavirus.

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Source: Reuters/afp/aa

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