World News in Brief: March 9

Tuesday, 2021-03-09 22:14:31
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Students are seen on the campus of LSE (The London School of Economics and Political Science) in London, Britain, on March 8, 2021. (Photo: Xinhua)
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Global gross domestic product (GDP) will grow at 5.6 percent this year if vaccination rollout is fast and effective enough across the world, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) said Tuesday in its Interim Economic Outlook. The forecast was 1.4 percentage points higher than the Paris-based organization's December prediction.

* Global stocks gained on Tuesday as hopes of a robust economic recovery bolstered confidence in riskier assets.

* The pandemic has had an "extremely unfair" impact on the income and economic opportunities of women, US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said, calling for long-term steps to improve labour market conditions for women.

* China launched a digital vaccination certificate for its citizens planning cross-border travel, joining other countries issuing similar documents as they seek to reopen their economies.

* Cambodia restricted travel to and from the Chrey Thom populated area in southern Kandal province's Koh Thom district on Tuesday after a spike in COVID-19 cases there in recent days.

* The COVID-19 pandemic continues to spread in Asia-Pacific countries as the Philippines' total cases topped 600,000 on Tuesday while Papua New Guinea is enduring the largest surge of infections.

* The COVID-19 cases in Indonesia rose by 6,389 within one day to 1,392,945, with the death toll adding by 210 to 37,757, the country's health ministry said on Tuesday. According to the ministry, 7,496 more people were discharged from hospitals, bringing the total number of recovered patients to 1,210,877.

* India's COVID-19 tally rose to 11,244,786 as 15,388 new cases were registered during the past 24 hours, according to the latest data from the federal health ministry. According to the official data, the death toll mounted to 157,930 as 77 COVID-19 patients died since Monday morning.

* Japan has decided to stage this summer's Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics without overseas spectators, Kyodo news agency reported.

* China and Russia on Tuesday signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on jointly building an international scientific research station on the moon, said the China National Space Administration (CNSA).

* Brazil recorded 987 COVID-19 deaths in the last 24 hours, bringing the death toll to 266,398, the Health Ministry said on Monday. Meanwhile, the country also reported 32,321 new COVID-19 cases, taking the nationwide tally to 11,051,665.

* India's federal government denied any shortage of vaccine doses in a big northwestern state and said it was sending supplies around the country based on demand and consumption patterns.

* The US House of Representatives could approve the Biden administration's US$1.9 trillion relief bill as early as Tuesday, with a vote allowing the Democratic president to sign the legislation into law later this week.

* Indonesia approved AstraZeneca's vaccine for emergency use.

* Johnson & Johnson told the European Union it is facing supply issues that may complicate plans to deliver 55 million doses of its vaccine to the bloc in the second quarter, an EU official said.

* UK cases will surge again even with a successful vaccine roll-out, England's Chief Medical Officer Chris Whitty said.

* Denmark's health minister said the country can ease restrictions further since the epidemic is not worsening there.

* France does not have the manufacturing capacity currently to produce Russia's Sputnik V vaccine, an economy ministry official said.

* The Hungarian and Czech prime ministers will meet Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Thursday to discuss policies to fight COVID-19 as a third wave sweeps central Europe.

* Brazilian company Precisa Medicamentos, representing India's Bharat Biotech, said it requested emergency authorization to use the Covaxin COVID-19 vaccine.

* Mexico aims to acquire an additional 22 million doses of Chinese vaccines during the coming months.

* The Canadian government announced that it's designating March 11 as National Day of observance to commemorate those who died of COVID-19. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said in a statement on Monday that it will also signify a reflection on the significant impacts all have felt due to COVID-19, from isolation and unemployment to losing time with friends and families.

* Indonesia's most active volcano Mount Merapi belched hot clouds 700 meters to the southwest at 6:33 a.m. local time on Tuesday, an official said. The hot clouds were recorded on the seismograph with an amplitude of 36 mm and a duration of 99.52 seconds, Head of Research and Development Center for Geological Disaster Technology Hanik Humaida said on Tuesday.

* Jordan is planning to extend a curfew and close some businesses, after it posted a near record one-day tally of cases, driven by a more contagious variant.

* Turkey has extended a ban on lay-offs for two months from March 17.