Science

Coronavirus live news: Hong Kong and California see record daily cases; 'huge discrepancy' in South Africa death toll


A summary of the latest updates on the pandemic from around the world.

The European commission extended until the end of October a waiver of customs duties and sales taxes on imported face masks and other medical gear to address shortages.

Britain said it will provide £100m pounds ($127m) of funding for a facility to scale up the manufacturing of vaccines against the coronavirus.

Belgium will tighten coronavirus containment measures on 25 July after a rise in infections.

Samples of wastewater from the Paris sewage system have been showing traces of the coronavirus since the end of June, the head of the laboratory leading the research said.

Americas

In the US, the treasury secretary, Steve Mnuchin, said the White House is interested in getting a trillion-dollar coronavirus relief bill out quickly and will not include the payroll tax cut long sought by the US president, Donald Trump.

China plans to provide a $1bn loan to make its coronavirus vaccine accessible for countries across Latin America and the Caribbean, the Mexican foreign ministry said.

Brazil and Argentina registered daily records for confirmed coronavirus cases on Wednesday, pushing the total number of cases in Latin America past 4 million.

Asia-pacific

Hong Kong reported a daily record in new cases on Thursday.

Japan’s capital has reported 366 new cases, a new daily record fuelling fears of a second round of infections.

Australia reported its highest daily number of coronavirus-related deaths in three months as new infections continued to climb in its second most populous state.

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India reported a record jump of 45,720 in coronavirus infections on Wednesday, taking its total number of cases to 1.24 million, the health ministry said.

Middle East and Africa

South Africa witnessed about 17,000 extra deaths from natural causes or 59% more than would normally be expected between early May and mid-July, scientists said, suggesting many more people are dying of Covid-19 than shown in official figures.

Baghdad International Airport reopened for scheduled commercial flights after months of closure, as Iraq’s total number of infections passed 100,000.

Israeli lawmakers empowered the government to order anti-coronavirus curbs with limited parliamentary oversight.

Economic fallout

Stock markets rose on Thursday as better-than-expected corporate earnings in Europe offset worries about rising coronavirus cases and an escalation in tensions between the US and China.

A temporary basic income for the world’s poorest 2.7 billion people in 132 developing countries could slow the spread by allowing them to stay home, a UN Development Programme (UNDP) report said.

Australia reported its biggest budget deficit since the second world war as the coronavirus crisis knocks the country into its first recession in three decades.



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