Besides Belgium, France has been hit particularly hard by the second wave of the corona pandemic. As a result, the government has imposed a strict curfew for the second time. All “non-essential” shops are closed until 1 December, with a high likelihood of extension. This concerns companies especially in the pre-Christmas period, which in some industries defines the annual revenu. Updates to the 2020 forecasts have shown that the second lockdown is expected to reduce France’s GDP by 11 instead of 10 percentage points. By way of comparison, the forecast for GDP decline in Germany is 5.5 percentage points for the entire year of 2020.
The small bar in Calle de Fortuny in Madrid’s city centre is crowded, as are many others these days. The people of Madrid don’t miss the chance to go out with friends. And yet everything is different since the weekend: Once again it has become quiet in the streets, and the normally lively Spanish capital has been closed off. According to the World Health Organisation WHO, 850 cases per 100,000 inhabitants have once again made the region the epicentre of the pandemic in Europe. Spain currently counts 32,000 corona deaths and 800,000 corona cases, almost forty percent of which are reported in Madrid. The second wave has hit the city with full force. Thousands of jobs in hotels, restaurants, flower shops and travel agencies are disappearing. The pandemic is hitting Spain not only in the geographical sense, but right in the heart.