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    Coronavirus by numbers

    30% of arts enterprises are under threat. © PxHere

    Every day, the government’s crisis centre announces the official figures of those affected by the new coronavirus (Covid-19).

    However, the crisis affects many other sectors at the same time, as the numbers illustrate.

    264 Belgian citizens were repatriated on Friday after spending the time since the start of the lockdown stranded in Morocco, foreign minister Philippe Goffin announced. Another flight is due to land at Brussels Airport on Saturday evening, with three more scheduled in the coming week.

    8 billion extra funding is needed to develop a vaccine against the coronavirus infection, according to German chancellor Angela Merkel, speaking on her weekly podcast. She will call on the European partners to help finance the project when they meet at a conference in Brussels on Monday.

    400,000 places are available in the country’s hotels, holiday lets, campsites and B&Bs, causing a headache for officials advising the population of 11.43 million to stay in Belgium for this year’s summer holidays.

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    30% of enterprises in the field of the arts, entertainment and recreational services considers the possibility of a bankruptcy either “likely” or “very likely,” according to a survey carried out by the National Bank. The average figure for other sectors is 9%.

    60% of people aged 18-35 want cafes to open up again as soon as possible, according to a poll by commercial real estate company Cushman & Wakefield. One in six prefers to wait three months, while the same number will stay away until a reliable treatment or a vaccine is found.

    19 passengers to be allowed on board one standard bus of the Walloon public transport authority TEC from Monday, according to the region’s government. But unions representing bus drivers complain that the increase – the limit at present is five – carries the risk on health problems.

    224 Dutch people ordered to return to the Netherlands after being caught by local police in the border area of Fourons. They were trying to enter Belgium despite the border being officially closed. Also ordered to go home were 113 Belgians trying to cross in the other direction. Non-essential travel outside the country is suspended until June 7.

    Alan Hope
    The Brussels Times