NewsWorldLatest on the worldwide spread of the coronavirus

Latest on the worldwide spread of the coronavirus

Latest update: 05/06/2020 08:16

The U.S. government is working with drugmakers to maximize availability of influenza vaccines, worried that a substantial flu season on top of another wave of the novel coronavirus could swamp the healthcare system this fall, a top U.S. health official said.

DEATHS AND INFECTIONS

* More than 6.63 million people have been reported infected with the new coronavirus globally and 390,080 have died, a Reuters tally showed as of 0451 GMT on Friday.

* For an interactive graphic tracking the global spread, click here.

EUROPE

* British drugmaker AstraZeneca has doubled manufacturing capacity for its potential coronavirus vaccine to 2 billion doses in a handful of deals involving Microsoft billionaire Bill Gates.

* The European Union is preparing to use an emergency 2.4-billion-euro fund for advance purchases of promising vaccines against COVID-19, EU officials told Reuters.

* The French government will mobilise 40 billion euros to support its hardest-hit industries, finance ministry officials said.

AMERICAS

* Scientists are resuming COVID-19 trials of hydroxychloroquine, as confusion continues to reign about the anti-malarial drug hailed by U.S. President Donald Trump as a potential “game-changer” against the pandemic.

* New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said extended demonstrations in the state after the killing of George Floyd could accelerate the virus’ spread, and urged protesters to get tested.

* New infections in Mexico reported on Thursday surpassed the record set just the previous day, and officials reported 816 more deaths as the pandemic engulfs Latin America’s major nations.

* Inovio Pharmaceuticals Inc said it plans to begin human trials of its potential COVID-19 vaccine in South Korea later in June.

* Gap Inc reported a quarterly loss of nearly $1 billion as the apparel retailer was forced to close its stores due to the coronavirus outbreak.

ASIA-PACIFIC

* As coronavirus sinks global demand, China’s exporters go online to tap domestic market

* China will promote the resumption of the tourism, culture and sports sectors, a top-level meeting chaired by the premier said, state radio reported.

* Rural parts of India have begun to see a surge in infections, as millions of returning migrant workers bring the virus home with them, according to data collected from seven Indian states.

* Singapore plans to soon launch a wearable device for novel coronavirus contact tracing that, if successful, it will distribute to all of its 5.7 million residents, the government said on Friday.

MIDDLE EAST AND AFRICA

* African countries have secured 90 million test kits for the next six months, a regional disease control body said, urging states and donors to boost the continent’s testing capabilities.

* Senegal said it would ease a dawn-to-dusk curfew after protesters in Dakar set tyres on fire and threw stones in demonstrations against the restrictions imposed almost three months ago.

ECONOMIC FALLOUT

* Asian stocks erased early losses on Friday and were poised for their biggest weekly rise since 2011, while the euro hovered near a 1-1/2 month high as Europe’s central bank surprised with more stimulus, fuelling hopes for a global rebound.

* The European Central Bank approved a bigger-than-expected expansion of its stimulus package.

* The volume of oil products traded during S&P Global Platts’ Market-on-Close process in Singapore plunged 74% in May from a year ago as the coronavirus pandemic slashed demand and a major trader halted business, data analysed by Reuters showed.

* The U.S. unemployment rate, which economists expect hit 19.8% in May, should be able to drop below 10% by the end of 2020, U.S. labor secretary said.

* Saudi Arabia’s banks face a tough few quarters as the pandemic and weak oil prices pressure profitability and loan growth, banking executives told Reuters.

* Canada’s economy is showing green shoots, with reports on home sales, consumer spending and new job postings trending upwards.

(Reuters)

Pictured: Indonesian Muslims stand in line before taking part in Friday prayers amid the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak in Jakarta, Indonesia, June 5, 2020. REUTERS/Ajeng Dinar Ulfiana

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