— This is the script of CNBC's news report for China's CCTV on June 25, 2021, Friday.
The tourism sector in many countries has been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic, and Queen Elizabeth II's income was also affected.
Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle alongside the Palace of Holyroodhouse are among the royal residences which would usually be open to visitors.
The sovereign's income dropped 53% to 9.4 million pounds in the 2020-21 fiscal year. Meanwhile, British taxpayers funded the Queen to the tune of 87.5 million pounds, up by 18.1 million pounds compared with the previous year, according to annual accounts published Thursday. During the pandemic, royal activities have decreased, so spending in some major areas was down. But the property maintenance soared by 11.2 million pounds to 49.5 million pounds as the project to renovate Buckingham Palace continues. Michael Stevens, the keeper of the privy purse, said the British royal family could face a shortfall of 35 million pounds because of the pandemic in the coming three years. Refurbishment of Buckingham Palace is expected to receive over 20 million pounds less in funding from the sovereign grant. 369 million pounds were initially earmarked for the 10-year renovation project.
Accelerating vaccination has become a major focus for countries across the globe to fight against COVID-19.
But slower-than-expected progress in some countries is a headache for their governments. Speaking in a televised address on Monday, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte threatened: "You choose, vaccine or I will have you jailed."
But he explained afterward that "Don't get me wrong, there is a crisis in this country", "I'm just exasperated by Filipinos not heeding the government." The Philippines is one of the worst-hit countries in Southeast Asia, with over 1.3 million cases. The day before Duterte's speech, only 2.1 million people had been fully vaccinated in a country that has a population of 100 million. The Philippine government targets to vaccinate up to 70 million people this year.
It has been more than a year since Kobe Bryant died in a helicopter crash, but there are still ongoing lawsuits around the accident.
Vanessa Bryant, Kobe's widow, and other families of the victims filed settlement papers to the court on this Tuesday, if approved, the settlement will end a negligence and wrongful death lawsuit filed against the owners of the helicopter and the estate of the pilot. The terms of the settlements are confidential.
The pilot, Kobe and his daughter as well as six other passengers on board were killed in this accident.
The National Transportation Safety Board(NTSB) concluded that this accident was caused by the pilot's poor decision-making, and cited the helicopter company as having "inadequate review and oversight of its safety management processes". However, this company labels this crash "an act of God" and countersued two air traffic controllers from the Federal Aviation Administration, saying the crash was caused by their "series of erroneous acts and/or omissions." The settlement agreement doesn't include the countersuit against the federal government.