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Businesses brace for impact as new COVID outbreak emerges across Australia

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Businesses in Australia are bracing themselves for a drop in revenue as fresh COVID cases lock down many states

For the first time in a year, Australia is dealing with outbreaks across the country.

An outbreak in Sydney linked to the highly contagious Delta variant has grown to 128 cases.

Cases have also been recorded in the Northern Territory, Queensland and Western Australia.

Health authorities say it is a “critical time” for the country, which has kept case numbers low with border closures and lockdowns.

This is the first time in months that cases have emerged in multiple parts of the country at the same time.

Businesses brace

Businesses are again feeling the impact of lockdowns and shut down orders with many in the travel sector, hospitality and arts again feeling the pinch.

A relief package to help Sydney businesses cope with the financial impacts of the city’s lockdown is expected to help operators recoup lost revenue and claim unused stock.

Lobbying from industry groups has meant the support package will echo the one provided to northern beaches businesses over the Christmas lockdown.

Sydney’s two-week lockdown is expected to wipe $2 billion off Australia’s GDP.

Australian leaders will hold an emergency meeting on Monday after a spike in Covid infections.

Both State and Federal Governments are now holding emergency crisis meetings in order to deal with emerging cases.

While thousands stayed indoors to work from home under new lockdown rules in multiple states, queues were spotted at Sydney’s mass vaccination centre.

Authorities are encouraging people to continue to get their vaccinations amid the stay-at-home order provided they wear a mask and are not experiencing any COVID-19 symptoms.

“I think we’re entering a new phase of this pandemic, with the more contagious Delta strain,”

Treasurer Josh Frydenberg told ABC News on Monday.

The escalation in Covid infections has prompted lockdowns in the cities of Sydney and Darwin, as well as restrictions across four states.

New South Wales hits breaking point

Meanwhile, the situation in New South Wales is at breaking point after the Bondi cluster rose to 110 cases over the weekend. 19 of the cases were not in isolation while they were infectious.

“I also do want to foreshadow that given how contagious this strain of the virus is, we do anticipate that in the next few days case numbers are likely to increase even beyond what we’ve seen,”

said NSW State Premier Gladys Berejiklian.

Greater Sydney, the Blue Mountains, the Central Coast, Wollongong and Shellharbour have started a two-week lockdown as a result.

There is mounting concern after a Virgin Australia crew member tested positive after flying to various cities across Australia

Other states enact tougher border restrictions to prevent further spread

The states of Victoria, South Australia, and Tasmania have all enacted tougher border restrictions with neighboring regions.

Meanwhile, the Australian Capital Territory is enforcing mask-wearing for the first time since the pandemic began.

aerial, Northern Territory

WA, Queensland and the Northern Territory are also dealing with new cases.

Both states have imposed heavy new restrictions and lockdowns have been extended.

Anthony Lucas is reporter, presenter and social media producer with ticker News. Anthony holds a Bachelor of Professional Communication, with a major in Journalism from RMIT University as well as a Diploma of Arts and Entertainment journalism from Collarts. He’s previously worked for 9 News, ONE FM Radio and Southern Cross Austerio’s Hit Radio Network. 

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Gunfire, smoke and haze as thousands protests in Melbourne

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Thousands of anti-lockdown protesters have taken to the streets of Melbourne defying stay at home orders and a shutdown of the construction sector

Thousands of people have taken to the streets of Melbourne to protest against a shutdown of the construction sector in the Australian state of Victoria.

Protesters defied public health directions imposed by the Victorian Government’s COVID-19 restrictions.

Aerial vision has captured a steady stream of construction workers in high-vis sprawling across the busy freeway on the outskirts of the CBD in Docklands.

The workers were seen weaving in and out of large trucks and traffic, ignoring the honking of horns, while chanting “f— the jab”, lighting flares and flying Donald Trump 2020 and CFMEU flags.

By mid-afternoon protesters took to a busy Melbourne freeway to disrupt traffic, seeing thousands of vehicles suddenly at a standstill

Police moved in by the busload as protesters moved back down towards the CBD approximately two hours after the demonstrators took to the West Gate Bridge.

Some protesters were also seen climbing on top of a halted truck. VicRoads, the state’s governing road management authority, earlier urged drivers to “exit the freeway as soon as possible”.

The protests in Melbourne’s CBD earlier turned violent with some angry demonstrators throwing bottles and objects at police.

Earlier Live Twitter Feed:

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World leaders arrive in New York as the UNGA meeting gets underway

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World leaders have arrived in the Big Apple for high-stakes diplomacy talks at the United Nations General Assembly

US President Joe Biden along with Australian PM Scott Morrison have arrived in New York ahead of the United Nations General Assembly.

Morrison has made headlines in recent days after revealing Australia’s agreement with the AUKUS pact resulted in a $90 billion submarine deal with France to be ditched.

Speaking on the tarmac at John F. Kennedy International Airport, Mr Morrison was adamant that dropping the French submarine deal was the right thing to do for Australia, despite the diplomatic fallout with France and potentially Europe.

“It was always going to be a difficult decision,”

The PM said.

Mr Morrison again underlined that conventional submarines from the French were not in Australia’s strategic interests in the Indo-Pacific, because of rising Chinese military technologies and capabilities.

The PM remained hopeful that the decision to ditch French diesel-powered subs in favour of US nuclear submarines would not affect any trade agreements with the EU.

China’s ambitions in the South China Sea will be a hot topic at the UNGA meeting

Other issues on the Quad leaders’ agenda include coronavirus vaccines, climate change and critical technologies.”It sounds like a big agenda and it is.”

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Debate between US parties grow as Democrats suspend debt limit

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To prevent government shutdown, Democrats are attempting to raise the debt ceiling, but it doesn’t come without protest from Republicans.

Democrats Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi

In the United States, the Democrats are seeking to combine a short-term spending bill with the suspension of the debt limit.

This follows weeks of debate over how leaders should respond and ultimately prevent a government shutdown.

In a joint statement, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and Senate leader Chuck Schumer said they will suspend the debt limit until the end of 2022, as Pelosi dares Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell to ditch the package.

“The American people expect our Republican colleagues to live up to their responsibilities and make good on the debts they proudly helped incur in the December 2020 ‘908’ COVID package that helped American families and small businesses reeling from the COVID crisis.”

Republicans adamant they will not contribute

In protest, McConnel remains certain that the Republicans will not side with the Democrats on the decision to increase the debt limit.

“The country must never default, the debt ceiling will need to be raised. But who does that depends on who the American people elect.”

Senate Minority leader mitch McConnel says.

Schumer says it is shameful that Republicans are even considering blocking the debt ceiling raise.

The reasoning behind the move

Democrats are reassuring that their decision to raise the debt limit does not authorise or allocate new federal spending.

Rather, their decision comes in a bid to borrow extra funding which will be used to cover pre-existing expenditures already approved by Congress.

This includes the bipartisan emergency COVID-relief legislation from December and payments to Social Security recipients and veterans.

Despite this, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen is warning that under the current circumstances, the department will reach its borrowing capacity during October, with the results potentially devastating for the US economy.

“We would emerge from this crisis a permanently weaker nation,” Yellen wrote in a Wall Street Journal op-ed published over the weekend.

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