Factbox – Latest on the worldwide spread of the coronavirus
(Reuters) – Pfizer and BioNTech said on Monday their COVID-19 vaccine induced a robust immune response in 5- to 11- year-olds, and they plan to ask for authorization to use the shot in children in that age range in the United States, Europe and elsewhere as soon as possible.
DEATHS AND INFECTIONS
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* The German government is not giving a target date for lifting coronavirus-related social distancing regulations since there is no certainty about how the pandemic would develop this winter, a spokesman said.
* Britain simplified rules on Friday for international travel to England, including scrapping the need for fully vaccinated passengers to take expensive tests on arrival from low-risk countries.
* New Zealand eased coronavirus curbs slightly in its largest city of Auckland, as the government expressed confidence that there was no widespread regional transmission of the Delta variant.
* Indonesia on Monday reported 1,932 new daily coronavirus infections, the lowest since August 2020.
* Vietnam was licensed Hanoi-based Vimedimex to import 30 million doses of China’s Hayat-Vax COVID-19 vaccine, and will allow a contractor to buy 10 million doses of Cuba’s Abdala shot.
* India will resume exports of COVID-19 vaccines from the next quarter, prioritising neighbouring countries first, the health minister said.
* India conducted the lowest number of daily COVID-19 tests since mid-August on Sunday, but the health ministry urged local governments not to let their guard down during the September to November festival season.
* U.S. regulators are expected to authorize a third booster shot of Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine for older and some high-risk Americans early this week in time for the government to roll them out by Friday as hoped.
* The president of Costa Rica has warned that developing countries are at risk of sliding into instability without more pandemic aid from richer nations and the IMF, the Financial Times reported.
* World leaders are returning to the United Nations in New York this week with a focus on boosting efforts to fight both climate change and the pandemic.
* Brazil registered 244 COVID-19 deaths on Sunday and 9,458 additional cases, while Mexico reported 4,983 new confirmed cases and 200 deaths.
MIDDLE EAST AND AFRICA
* Iran’s new government has approved the vaccine developed by U.S. firm Johnson & Johnson, a senior official said, as the Islamic Republic faces a fifth wave of infections.
* Police in Dubai have built up a special unit of 38 sniffer dogs that can detect COVID-19 from human sweat samples with 92% accuracy, the supervisor of the training programme told Reuters.
* Researchers are collecting samples from bats in northern Cambodia in a bid to understand the pandemic, returning to a region where a very similar virus was found in the animals a decade ago.
* World shares skidded and the dollar firmed on Monday ahead of a week packed with global central bank meetings, while debt troubles at property group China Evergrande dragged Hong Kong stocks towards to a one-year low.[MKTS/GLOB]
* Thailand has increased the ceiling of its public debt-to-gross domestic product ratio to 70% from 60%, allowing the government to raise more funds to help a struggling economy.
* The United Arab Emirates central bank sees increased risks of illicit financial flows emerging from the pandemic, including money-laundering and terrorism financing, it said in a report.
(Compiled by Sarah Morland, Devika Syamnath and Shailesh Kuber; Editing by Giles Elgood)