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Agnes Pયરnier-Rancher, French Minister of Trade, in Paris on October 18, 2021.

Eric Pirmont | AFP | Getty Photographs

French Trade Minister Agnes Pઅnier-Rancher mentioned on Friday that the federal government was “very fastidiously” monitoring Europe’s newest wave of Covid-19 infections, urging residents to be vaccinated to make sure strict measures weren’t wanted.

It comes at a time when many European international locations are imposing stricter public well being restrictions to deal with the sharp rise in covid infections.

Earlier on Friday, Austria grew to become the primary nation in Western Europe to impose a full nationwide lockdown this fall.

The World Well being Group has as soon as once more acknowledged Europe because the “epicenter” of the coronavirus epidemic, with the area experiencing the best variety of new instances and deaths in latest weeks.

“The scenario seems like this, and you may see I am cautious, a bit higher than Austria and Germany. Perhaps it is as a result of we have achieved a stage of vaccination protection that is very excessive,” Panier-Rancher informed CNBC’s Karen. Tso on Friday.

“We have now some form of tight management over the sanitary scenario however clearly we’ll observe it carefully within the coming days,” she added.

In France, 20,366 covid infections have been reported on Thursday, with greater than 20,000 new each day infections reported for the second day in a row as the newest wave of epidemics accelerates.

About 69% of the French inhabitants is absolutely vaccinated towards coronavirus. It’s barely increased than the vaccination price in Austria and Germany, though it lags considerably behind international locations akin to Spain and Portugal.

A French authorities spokesman mentioned earlier this week that no further measures have been on the agenda, including that the main focus could be on vaccinations to restrict the variety of hospital admissions.

‘Please get vaccinated’

When requested if the financial blow from the second lockdown could be similar to the primary wave of covid infections in Europe final yr, Penier-Rancher replied: “I do not suppose so as a result of now we all know the best way to alter ourselves.”

“However this isn’t excellent news about being able to take some increased management measures. That’s the reason we’re pushing individuals to get vaccinated and that can be my important message: please get vaccinated,” she mentioned.

“In the present day we have now the one weapon towards this virus and even when it’s not good it appears to be fairly efficient.”

The Austrian authorities mentioned on Friday it might implement the lockdown measures for an preliminary interval of 10 days from Monday, warning that the measures may last as long as 20 days. Individuals with out vaccinations within the nation are already banned from leaving their properties for non-essential functions.

Chancellor Alexander Schellenberg mentioned the federal government plans to make covid vaccination obligatory for the complete inhabitants by February subsequent yr, including that that is obligatory to forestall additional waves of an infection.

Austria reported 15,145 new covid instances on Thursday, setting a brand new document for each day optimistic checks. The variety of hospital admissions, deaths and covid sufferers within the ICU can also be rising quickly.

About 65% of Austria’s inhabitants has been absolutely vaccinated towards the virus, which Shellenberg beforehand described as “shamefully low”.

In the meantime, about 68% of the German inhabitants has been absolutely vaccinated. Each international locations have the bottom vaccination charges in Western Europe.

Greater than 65,000 new instances have been reported in Germany on Thursday, with well being officers warning that the true variety of instances may double or triple. Chancellor Angela Merkel mentioned earlier this week that the newest Covid wave was hitting the nation with “full power”.

– CNBC’s Chloe Taylor contributed to this report.

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