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Nova Scotia reports 7 new COVID-19 cases Tuesday – CBC.ca

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Nova Scotia is reporting seven new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday, all related to travel or other known cases.

Three of the new cases are in the central zone and are related to travel outside Atlantic Canada. The people are self-isolating.

The other four are in northern zone and are close contacts of previously reported cases.

There are now 40 known active cases in Nova Scotia.

“COVID-19 is still here and wants us to let our guard down. But we are not going to let that happen after all the hard work and sacrifice by Nova Scotians,” Premier Stephen McNeil said in a news release Tuesday. 

“We will contain the virus over the holiday season by keeping our gatherings small, wearing a mask and following all of the other public health protocols.”

New household gathering limits across Nova Scotia came into effect on Monday. Gatherings must be limited to 10 people total, including household members.

While people are no longer directed to avoid the Halifax and Hants County areas, the province has advised against unnecessary travel this holiday season. 

All the active COVID-19 exposure sites in the province can be found here.

Dr. Robert Strang, Nova Scotia’s chief medical officer of health, had an important message for all the kids during Monday’s COVID-19 news briefing. 1:24

The new cases were discovered among 1,795 tests completed by Nova Scotia Health Authority labs on Monday.

No one is in hospital due to the virus.

“I’m encouraged to see that our case numbers have remained low as we get closer to the holiday season,” Dr. Robert Strang, Nova Scotia’s chief medical officer of health, said in the release.

“Let’s keep up the good work by continuing to follow all the public health measures — adhere to the gathering limits, keep a consistent social group, stay home if you are feeling unwell, wash your hands and self-isolate if required.”

On Monday, the province announced it would install four new COVID-19 vaccine storage sites across the province this week.

Freezers capable of creating ultra-low temperatures to store the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine will be installed at the Cape Breton Regional Hospital in Sydney, Colchester East Hants Health Centre in Truro, Valley Regional Hospital in Kentville and Yarmouth Regional Hospital.

Cases in the Atlantic provinces

The latest numbers from the Atlantic provinces are:

  • P.E.I. reported no new cases on Tuesday. The province has seven active cases.
  • Newfoundland and Labrador reported one new case on Tuesday. The province has 29 active cases and one person in hospital. The province is warning of three COVID-19 exposures on flights from Halifax to Gander over the last two weeks. They have asked people in that province to come forward for testing. So far, any Nova Scotians on these flights have not been asked to get tested.
  • New Brunswick reported four new cases on Monday and had 48 active cases.
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Couche-Tard drops bid to take over Carrefour: sources – CBC.ca

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Canada’s Alimentation Couche-Tard has dropped its 16.2 billion euro ($24.9 billion Cdn) bid to acquire European retailer Carrefour SA after the takeover plan ran into stiff opposition from the French government, two sources familiar with the matter told Reuters on Friday.

The decision to end merger talks came after a meeting on Friday between French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire and Couche-Tard’s founder and chairman, Alain Bouchard, the sources said, speaking on condition of anonymity as the matter is confidential.

Couche-Tard and Carrefour declined to comment.

Earlier on Friday, France ruled out any sale of grocer Carrefour on food security grounds, prompting the Canadian firm and its allies to mount a last-ditch attempt to salvage the deal.

“Food security is strategic for our country so that’s why we don’t sell a big French retailer,” Le Maire said. “My answer is extremely clear: we are not in favour of the deal. The no is polite, but it’s a clear and final no.”

Couche-Tard was hoping to win France’s blessing by offering commitments on jobs and France’s food supply chain as well as keeping the merged entity listed in both Paris and Toronto, with Carrefour boss Alexandre Bompard and his Couche-Tard counterpart Brian Hannasch leading it as co-CEOs, one of the sources said.

The plan also included a commitment to keep the new entity’s global strategic operations in France and having French nationals on its board, he said.

Couche-Tard was also going to pump in 3 billion euros of investments to the French retailer — a plan that was widely backed by Carrefour, which employs 105,000 workers in France, its largest market, making it France’s biggest private-sector employer.

Criticism of foreign investment strategy

The French move, with ministers shooting down the offer less than 24 hours after talks were confirmed, sparked disquiet in some business circles over how French President Emmanuel Macron decides which foreign investment is welcome and which is not.

Some politicians and bankers said the push-back could tarnish Macron’s pro-business image while others highlighted that the COVID-19 crisis had forced more than one country to redefine its strategic national interests.

The comments sparked a trans-Atlantic flurry of lobbying and Couche-Tard’s Bouchard flew to Paris to explain the merits of the deal to Le Maire, the source said.

Bouchard said the finance minister reiterated his opposition without listening to the terms of the transaction.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, asked about the prospects for a deal, said he would always be there to help Canadian firms succeed internationally and said he spoke this week with Macron.

One of France’s biggest employers

Along with other retailers, Carrefour, with roughly a fifth of France’s groceries market, played a major role in ensuring smooth food supplies as the COVID-19 pandemic hit.

A woman pushes her full shopping cart as she leaves a Carrefour supermarket in Drancy, France, on April 15, during the 30th day of a strict COVID-19 lockdown. (Bertrand Guay/AFP via Getty Images)

The country has tightened takeover rules to protect French companies deemed strategic, including under the presidency of Macron, who will face a presidential election in 2022.

During the pandemic, Macron has ramped up calls to protect French sovereignty in areas such as health care and industry, although the former investment banker has tried to strike a balance with a business-friendly approach.

Couche-Tard made a non-binding offer on Wednesday for the French grocery group, largely in cash.

A source familiar with the discussions told Reuters that 20 euros per share was not enough but was a starting point for discussions. Initial contact between the two companies came at the end of last year and Couche-Tard sent its first letter in early January, the source said.

Carrefour acknowledged Couche-Tard’s approach to discuss a combination on Wednesday.

A Couche-Tard convenience store is shown in Montreal. The company’s non-binding offer for Carrefour was made largely in cash. (Graham Hughes/Canadian Press)

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Global National: Jan. 15, 2021 | COVID-19 vaccines delayed after manufacturing expansion – Global News

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[unable to retrieve full-text content]

  1. Global National: Jan. 15, 2021 | COVID-19 vaccines delayed after manufacturing expansion  Global News
  2. Pfizer to temporarily reduce vaccine deliveries to Canada, minister says  CBC.ca
  3. Pfizer is cutting shipments to Canada | How will the COVID-19 vaccination strategy be impacted?  CTV News
  4. COVID-19 Update: Snowbirds head to Florida for shots | Pfizer delay a setback for Alberta | Drumheller inmates go on hunger strike  Calgary Herald
  5. Pfizer delays delivery of COVID-19 vaccines  CityNews Toronto
  6. View Full coverage on Google News



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B.C. faces tough choices as near-term Pfizer vaccine shipments cut in half – Global News

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British Columbia health officials are working to determine how to prioritize who gets a COVID-19 immunization, amid a reduction in shipments of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine they admit will have a significant effect.

Pfizer has announced a temporary delay in shipments of the vaccine as it scales up its European production centre.

Read more:
‘Temporary delay’ chops Canada’s deliveries of Pfizer vaccine in half for four weeks

That means that the 50,000-dose shipment British Columbia was expecting in February will be slashed in half.


Click to play video 'Ottawa reassures Canadians after announcement of COVID-19 vaccine delay'



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Ottawa reassures Canadians after announcement of COVID-19 vaccine delay


Ottawa reassures Canadians after announcement of COVID-19 vaccine delay

“In some sectors the delivery will be delayed and that is just the reality we face,” Dix told Global News on Friday.

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“What it will really affect is the February and March period … it obviously impacts the priority groups and second doses as well.”

Read more:
Pfizer vaccine delay a ‘blow,’ will affect Alberta’s vaccine schedule: health minister

Dix added that there was no interruption in the supply of the Moderna vaccine, and that the delay would have little effect on Pfizer shipments next week.


Click to play video 'Focus BC: Vaccine rollout, long term care strategy during the pandemic'



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Focus BC: Vaccine rollout, long term care strategy during the pandemic


Focus BC: Vaccine rollout, long term care strategy during the pandemic

In an interview with Global’s Focus BC, provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said her team was working to determine who will and won’t get their shot in that time period.

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Officials must weigh whether to skip some front-line workers who are still waiting for their shot, or to extend the time period between when each person receives their first and second dose.

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Pfizer guidelines call for the doses to be administered 21 days apart, while Canada’s vaccine advisory committee has recommended vaccines be given a maximum of 42 days after the first.

Quebec is considering spreading the doses by as many as 90 days.

Read more:
Coronavirus: New vaccine appointments paused in Manitoba as Pfizer announces delay

“People need to be reassured that even after 48 days and longer, it does not just drop off dramatically,” Henry said.

“We will look at how much vaccine is coming in, how many people are due to get their vaccine in that week (when) we will have less, and then we will have to make decisions on we have to optimize who gets vaccine at that time.”


Click to play video 'How will I know it’s my turn to get the vaccine? Your COVID-19 questions answered'



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How will I know it’s my turn to get the vaccine? Your COVID-19 questions answered


How will I know it’s my turn to get the vaccine? Your COVID-19 questions answered

Henry said the silver lining of the temporary delay in doses was that the work Pfizer is doing at its plant will allow it to produce more vaccine down the road, some of which will come to British Columbia.

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As of Friday, B.C. had given at least one dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine to nearly 76,000 people.

The province has concentrated distribution of its first doses of vaccine to front-line health-care workers, those working and living in long-term care facilities and First Nations communities.

Federal Procurement Minister Anita Anand said Friday the issues at Pfizer’s Belgium plant would result in an be an “unfortunate” situation where Canada would see its expected shipment of vaccine in February cut in half.

— With files from Richard Zussman and the Canadian Press

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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