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Factbox: Latest on worldwide spread of the coronavirus

(Reuters) - Millions of Americans appeared to be disregarding public health warnings and travelling ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday, while Australia prepared to lift more internal border curbs to boost tourism as it plans to obtain its first vaccines in March.

FILE PHOTO: A patient arrives outside Maimonides Medical Center, as the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) continues, in Brooklyn, New York, U.S., November 17, 2020. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

DEATHS AND INFECTIONS

* For an interactive graphic tracking the global spread of COVID-19, open here in an external browser.

* Eikon users, see COVID-19: MacroVitals here for a case tracker and summary of news.

EUROPE

* Spain’s King Felipe VI started 10 days of quarantine on Monday after coming into close contact with someone who later tested positive for the novel coronavirus.

* England will introduce a new system on Dec. 15 allowing passengers arriving from high-risk countries to take a COVID-19 test after five days of quarantine and to be released from any further self-isolation if they test negative.

* British Prime Minister Boris Johnson set out new measures to replace a lockdown in England from Dec. 2, as Germany headed towards an extension of its “lockdown lite” for another three weeks.

AMERICAS

* Mexican church and civic leaders cancelled an annual gathering that attracts massive crowds of Catholic pilgrims to protect people.

* Canada could approve one or more COVID-19 vaccines early in the first quarter of 2021, under a new, accelerated process similar to the U.S. emergency use authorization.

* More than 3 million airline passengers passed through U.S. airports over the weekend, making it the busiest air-travel weekend since coronavirus lockdowns hit in mid-March.

ASIA-PACIFIC

* Australia’s Qantas will insist in future that international travellers have a COVID-19 vaccination before they fly, describing the move as “a necessity”.

* Malaysia said it would close some factories of the world’s biggest rubber glove maker as more than 2,000 of its workers had tested positive for COVID-19.

* The Japanese government is preparing to pause its domestic travel campaign in two cities following sharp rises in COVID-19 cases.

* South Korea’s delivery workers have fallen into what they call a “legal blind spot” and say it’s a deadly place to be as the pandemic drives an unprecedented boom in online business.

MIDDLE EAST AND AFRICA

* Saudi Arabia’s health ministry said that COVID-19 vaccines will be free for all people living in the kingdom, state TV reported.

* Nigeria will bar passengers who fail to follow the country’s COVID-19 protocol from flying for six months, an official said.

MEDICAL DEVELOPMENTS

* Brazil has gathered enough infection data from a late-stage trial of an experimental vaccine developed by China’s Sinovac Biotech and expects to have interim results on its efficiency in early December.

* The U.S. government will start distributing Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Inc’s newly authorized COVID-19 antibody combination on Tuesday, beginning with over 30,000 treatment courses.

ECONOMIC IMPACT

* Asian shares climbed on Tuesday as news U.S. President-elect Joe Biden was given the go-ahead to begin his White House transition added to an already brighter mood from progress made on COVID-19 vaccines and the prospects for a speedy global economic revival. [MKTS/GLOB]

* U.S. business activity expanded at the fastest rate in more than five years in November led by the quickest pickup in manufacturing since September 2014, a survey showed on Monday.

* Bank of Japan Governor Haruhiko Kuroda said on Tuesday he saw no immediate need to overhaul the central bank’s monetary policy framework, as the hit to the economy from COVID-19 keeps inflation distant from its 2% inflation target.

Compiled by Ramakrishnan M., Devika Syamnath and Linda Pasquini, Edited by Sriraj Kalluvila and Shounak Dasgupta

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