(Reuters) -Europe’s drugs regulator said its safety panel will call a meeting of experts on March 29 to further study the reported cases of blood clots linked to the AstraZeneca vaccine as countries resume its use.
DEATHS AND INFECTIONS * Eikon users, see COVID-19: MacroVitals https://apac1.apps.cp.thomsonreuters.com/cms/?navid=1592404098 for a case tracker and summary of news.
* Germany’s lower house of parliament voted in favour of a European Union plan to take on joint debt and channel the money to member states worst hit by COVID-19, the Bundestag’s vice president said.
* Sweden will resume use of AstraZeneca’s vaccine for people aged 65 and older, the health agency said, but keep the pause in place for younger Swedes.
* Denmark will receive 450,000 fewer doses of vaccines from Johnson & Johnson in April than planned, the Danish Health Agency said.
* Poland will shut kindergartens, hair salons and limit church service attendance as of Saturday after setting another consecutive daily record of new coronavirus cases.
* Russia’s RDIF sovereign wealth fund said it had reached an agreement with Serbia’s Torlak Institute to produce the Sputnik V vaccine there.
* Canada’s health department continues to back AstraZeneca’s vaccine even after updating the vaccine’s label to provide information on rare blood clots associated with a low platelet count following an immunization shot.
* China has administered 85.86 million doses of vaccines in the country as of Wednesday, the National Health Commission said.
* Thailand has granted emergency authorisation to Janssen, the single-dose coronavirus vaccine of Johnson & Johnson, the country’s health minister said, the third vaccine to be cleared for local use.
* India has put a temporary hold on all major exports of the AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine made by the Serum Institute of India to meet demand at home as infections rise, two sources told Reuters, as the country reported a new variant of the coronavirus.
MIDDLE EAST AND AFRICA
* The first 723,000 of up to 7 million vaccine doses that MTN Group is donating to African countries have arrived in nine nations, the African Union’s disease control body said.
* Israel has administered two doses of COVID-19 vaccine to more than half its population, the health minister said, a world-beating roll-out that has helped the country emerge from pandemic closures.
* Oman will impose a curfew beginning Sunday until April 8, as it tightens restrictions to curb a rise in coronavirus cases, state media reported.
* AstraZeneca’s said its vaccine was 76% effective in a new analysis of its U.S. trial – only a tad lower than the level in an earlier report this week criticised for using outdated data.
* China’s CanSino Biologics has proposed supplying “tens of million of doses” of its single-dose vaccine to global vaccine sharing scheme COVAX, a senior company executive said.
* Global equities languished close to two-week lows while the dollar traded near a four-month high against the euro, as investors worried that Europe’s COVID-19 response was falling behind that in the United States. [MKTS/GLOB]
* Euro zone bond yields fell as pandemic fears continued to weigh on risk sentiment, while U.S. Treasury yields were unchanged ahead of an auction of seven-year notes.
* Brazil’s central bank trimmed its economic growth outlook for this year to 3.6% from 3.8%, according to its latest quarterly inflation report, citing “above-usual uncertainty” over a recovery amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
(Compiled by Veronica Snoj and Aditya Soni; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila and Giles Elgood)