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Source: Socialist Republic of Vietnam

* Russia has clinched a deal with Egypt to supply it with 25 million doses of its Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine, as Moscow seeks to take a leading global role in fighting the pandemic. Russia’s sovereign wealth fund, RDIF, said on Wednesday (September 30) it had agreed to supply the vaccine doses to Egypt via Pharco, which it described as one of the country’s leading pharmaceutical groups.

* The chief executive of GlaxoSmithKline, the world’s largest maker of vaccines, said she was optimistic the industry will be able to make an immunisation against COVID-19 widely available next year.

* Lonza is confident that US and Swiss plants it is building to help make Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine candidate will be ready for commercial production this year, executives at the Swiss company said on Tuesday.

* Germany’s CureVac NV said it has started a mid-stage study testing its experimental coronavirus vaccine and plans to begin a decisive global trial with about 30,000 volunteers in the fourth quarter.

* Russia has completed clinical trials of a second potential vaccine against COVID-19, developed by Siberia’s Vector Institute, the RIA news agency cited Russian consumer safety watchdog Rospotrebnadzor as saying on Wednesday. The institute completed early-stage human trials, known as Phase II, earlier this month.

* World Bank President David Malpass said he was seeking board approval for a US$12 billion coronavirus vaccine financing plan to help poor and developing countries secure vaccine doses, as part of the US$160 billion coronavirus aid financing pledged by the bank.

* Fighting between Azerbaijan and ethnic Armenian forces entered a fourth day on Wednesday in the biggest eruption of their decades-old conflict since a 1994 ceasefire. Azerbaijan and the ethnic Armenian enclave of Nagorno-Karabakh said there were attacks from both sides at several directions along the line of contact that divides them.

* The US recovery from the coronavirus-linked recession has been more robust than expected, a top Federal Reserve policymaker said, though he added it could be about three years before the economy regains its full strength.

* Mainland China reported 19 new COVID-19 cases on Sept. 29, up from 12 a day earlier, the country’s national health authority said on Wednesday. The total number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in the mainland now stands at 85,403, while the death toll remained unchanged at 4,634.

* New York City will impose fines on people who refuse to wear a face covering as the rate of positive tests for the novel coronavirus climbed above 3% for the first time in months, Mayor Bill de Blasio said.

* India’s coronavirus case tally surged to 6.23 million after it reported 80,472 new infections in the last 24 hours, data from the health ministry showed on Wednesday.

* Russia on Wednesday reported 8,481 new coronavirus cases in the last 24 hours, pushing the nationwide tally to 1,176,286. Authorities said 177 people had died, bringing the official death toll to 20,722.

* Indonesia on Wednesday reported 4,284 new coronavirus cases, taking the total number of infections to 287,008, data from the country’s COVID-19 task force showed. There were also 139 additional coronavirus-related deaths reported, taking the total number of fatalities to 10,740.

* The Philippines’ health ministry on Wednesday confirmed 2,426 new coronavirus infections and 58 additional deaths. In a bulletin, the ministry said total confirmed cases had increased to 311,694, nearly a third of which were reported in September alone, while deaths had reached 5,504.

* US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said on Tuesday she hoped to have a coronavirus aid deal with the White House this week, after speaking with Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin.

* Canada’s federal authorities and its two biggest provinces promised new measures to combat a second wave that is notching up as many cases as during the pandemic’s peak in April.

* Germany reported 1,798 new coronavirus cases on Wednesday, a tally from the Robert Koch Institute for infectious diseases showed.

* Italy is likely to extend a state of emergency to help keep the health crisis under control, a senior official said.

* Finland and Poland slapped new curfews on bars and restaurants, while German Chancellor Angela Merkel said the country would restrict the size of gatherings and fine people who flout tracking rules.

* Hundreds of junior Spanish doctors took to the streets of Barcelona to demand better working conditions as they struggle against a second wave of infections.

* Poland reported 1,552 new coronavirus cases on Wednesday, close to last week’s record high, as it is imposing restrictions on bars and restaurants in its most affected regions. For the past week Poland has seen more than 1,000 new cases per day. The authorities announced a record 1,587 new infections on Friday. The biggest rise in cases was in southeast Poland, the health ministry said.

* Slovakia has reported 567 new coronavirus cases, the largest single-day tally since the COVID-19 pandemic started this year, health ministry data showed on Wednesday. The central European country of 5.5 million people has one of Europe’s lowest death tolls from the disease and kept case numbers low during an initial wave in March and April. But like other countries it has recently faced a spike in cases and has limited public events and taken other measures to fight the spread of the virus.

* Turkey expects concrete steps to be taken at a European Union summit on Oct. 1-2 regarding issues including the updating of a 2016 migrant deal and customs union with the bloc, as well as visa liberalisation, Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Wednesday.

* Kuwait’s new ruler, Sheikh Nawaf al-Ahmad al-Sabah, took the oath of office in parliament on Wednesday, pledging to work for the Gulf Arab state’s prosperity and stability and calling for uniting ranks in the face of challenges.

* Spain added about 100,000 jobs in September as the economy slowly recovers from the effects of the coronavirus pandemic, Social Security Minister Jose Luis Escriva said on Wednesday. He said the country had lost about 1 million jobs during the lockdown between mid March and late June and has gained back about 600,000 jobs.

* Ukraine registered a record 4,027 cases of new coronavirus in the past 24 hours, the national security council said on Wednesday, up from a previous record of 3,833 new cases reported on Sept. 26. The daily tally of coronavirus infections spiked in September above 3,000, prompting the government to extend lockdown measures until the end of October. The council said a total of 208,959 cases were registered in Ukraine as of Sept. 30, with 4,129 deaths.

* Colombia will extend a selective quarantine for the duration of October.

MIL OSI Asia Pacific News