PARIS: Here are the latest developments in the coronavirus crisis:
– Belgium to vaccinate 16-17 year-olds –
Belgium plans next month to start vaccinating people between the ages of 16 and 17 years old.
“Starting in the month of July, they will start receiving an invitation concerning the first dose,” ministers said in a statement.
They will receive the Pfizer/BioNTech coronavirus jab, the first vaccine to be approved for children by the European Union medical watchdog.
– Brazil okays vaccine imports –
Brazil´s health regulator Anvisa issues exceptional clearance for imports of Russia´s vaccine against Covid-19, Sputnik-V, and India´s Covaxin, while at the same time setting limits on their use.
The agency had originally opposed their use because of a lack of data on them.
– Italy logs vaccinations record –
Italy logs 600,000 vaccinations Friday, the most for a single day, the authorities announce.
A total of 37.06 million doses of vaccine have now been administered, and 12.7 million people have been fully vaccinated.
– Italian tourism fighting back –
Italian tourism is fighting back and the Italian tourism federation expects a 20-percent increase in summer tourist numbers this year over 2020 amid eased Covid-19 restrictions.
But most revenue is set to come from domestic visitors as Italians look to visit coastal resorts and city draws such as Rome, Venice and Florence and Assoturismo said the rise “would not be enough to return to pre-Covid levels”.
Before the pandemic, tourism accounted for 14 percent of GDP in Italy — the EU´s third largest economy — and coronavirus fallout helped tip Italy into its worst recession since World War II.
– New Delhi eases lockdown –
Markets and shopping malls in New Delhi will be allowed to partially reopen from Monday in a further easing of the Covid-19 lockdown, the chief minister says as infections fall in major Indian cities after weeks of restrictions.
Delhi Metro will also resume services at 50 percent capacity, the city´s chief minister Arvind Kejriwal says.
The government of the state of Maharashtra, which includes business hub Mumbai, meanwhile unveiled a five-stage plan to ramp down restrictions, depending on infection data and hospital capacity.
– Olympic champion queasy –
Australia´s defending Olympic 100m freestyle champion Kyle Chalmers says the prospect of being in Japan for the Tokyo Games is a “little bit scary”.
Tokyo is currently under emergency measures, less strict than blanket lockdowns.
– Over 3.7 million deaths –
The novel coronavirus has killed at least 3,714,923 people since the outbreak emerged in China in December 2019, according to a tally from official sources compiled by AFP at 1000 GMT on Saturday.
The United States is the worst-affected country with 597,001 deaths.
After the US, the hardest-hit countries are Brazil with 470,842 deaths, India with 344,082 deaths, Mexico with 228,568 deaths, and Peru with 185,813 deaths.
The World Health Organization estimates that the pandemic´s overall toll could be two to three times higher than official records, due to the excess mortality that is directly and indirectly linked to Covid-19.