International Update: Global Covid-19 cases near 15 million – concerns over US reporting – Europe could approve first vaccine this year

22nd July 2020 (Last Updated July 22nd, 2020 10:20)

22 July

Global: The number of coronavirus cases worldwide passed 14.9 million on Wednesday, according to the Johns Hopkins University tracker, which relies on official government data. Known coronavirus deaths number 616,764.

US: California on Tuesday became the second US state after New York to report more than 400,000 Covid-19 cases, according to a Reuters tally of county data. Reuters reports that California has a total of 400,166 Covid-19 cases.

The United States is failing to report vital information on Covid-19. The data would help authorities track the spread of the disease and prevent the deaths of tens of thousands of Americans, according to the first comprehensive review of the nation’s coronavirus data.

President Donald Trump rebooted his coronavirus briefings with a warning about a surge in US cases even as he sought to reassure Americans that his administration has the crisis under control.

A new study by the University of Nebraska suggests that Covid-19 can spread through normal speaking and breathing, and travel further than two metres, according to a report by AFP.

Brazil: Brazil has confirmed 41,008 more cases in the past 24 hours, as well as 1,367 related deaths, the country’s health ministry has said.

India: India reported 648 new deaths on Wednesday to take its total to 28,732, passing Spain to rank seventh globally in deaths, according to data compiled by John Hopkins University. The country already ranks third in the number of infections.

Mexico: Mexico reported 6,859 new Covid-19 cases, bringing the total to 356,255, according to data released by the Health Ministry Tuesday night. Deaths rose 915 to 40,400.

Australia: The state of Victoria reported the highest-ever one-day new case total for an Australian state, with 484 in a single day. The rise is higher than Australia’s previous record one-day total, which means Wednesday also marked Australia’s highest cases over the course of the pandemic so far.

China: China has reported 14 new cases of coronavirus, five of them imported and the rest in the far western region of Xinjiang. There have been no new cases of community transmission in Beijing for 16 days, according to state media.

South Korea: South Korea reported 63 more Covid-19 cases in 24 hours, raising the total tally to 13,879, according to data from the Korea Centers for Disease Control & Prevention.

Vaccine News

Europe: European regulators could approve the first vaccine against Covid-19 this year, after a flurry of trials by drugmakers leading the race showed promising results.

Lockdown updates

Zimbabwe: President Emmerson Mnangagwa on Tuesday imposed a curfew and reinstated strict measures to curb the spread of the coronavirus following a spike in cases in recent weeks. The number of cases recorded in the country rose by nearly a third over the past week to a total 1,713 cases. The number of deaths climbed from 18 to 26.

Qatar: Qatar is relaxing its coronavirus travel restrictions from the beginning of next month. From 1 August, citizens and permanent residents will be allowed to travel overseas and return, while residents will be allowed to return.

Indonesia: Two out of three Indonesians oppose continuing strict social-distancing orders, according to a survey. The government should prioritize efforts to revive the economy rather than tackling virus spread, a majority of participants told pollster Indikator Politik Indonesia.

Japan: Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike told residents to avoid unnecessary trips outdoors during an upcoming four-day weekend, as the total number of coronavirus cases in the city topped 10,000. The capital had another 230 or more cases Wednesday, Koike said earlier.

Singapore: Singapore is preparing for the resumption of business events such as meetings, conventions, exhibitions and trade shows as economic activities restart, according to a statement by the Singapore Tourism Board.

Austria: Austria is again tightening measures against the virus, dialling back part of its easing in the past few weeks as new infections have surged in various clusters.

Economy updates

Europe: The euro hit an 18-month high and stock markets gained ground after the EU agreed on a €750bn pandemic recovery fund, in a deal closely following reports that a coronavirus vaccine could be ready within months.

US: Senate Republicans are considering whether to cut the unemployment insurance subsidy to 70% of the $600 weekly addition to state-run unemployment programs provided by the last round of economic aid, or pushing for 70-75% of prior wage replacement, a smaller benefit.

China: Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd. said it reached an agreement with Airbus SE to defer aircraft deliveries as part of its move to preserve cash amid slowing business due to the coronavirus pandemic.