World News in Brief: June 30

Thursday, 2022-06-30 19:14:35
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China’s Shanghai will gradually reopen museums, art galleries and some scenic spots from July 1, state media quoted authorities as saying, while restaurants and eateries in the city have begun reopening their doors to diners. (Image for Illustration/Photo: GT)
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High COVID-19 vaccination rates and free trade agreements (FTAs), namely the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) and the Cambodia-China FTA (CCFTA), have been helping boost Cambodia's economic recovery, said a World Bank economic update report released on Thursday.

* Ferdinand Romualdez Marcos was sworn in as the 17th president of the Philippines on Thursday at the National Museum in Manila in front of thousands of people who witnessed the inauguration.

* China stocks marked their best month in nearly two years on Thursday, supported by signs of an economic recovery after the easing of COVID-19 restrictions.

* The Kremlin said on Thursday it has not yet decided whether President Vladimir Putin will attend November's G20 summit in Indonesia. In a call with reporters, Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov said Russia had an invitation to attend and would decide "at the necessary time" whether Putin will go in person.

* Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday that Moscow was open to a dialogue on strategic stability and nuclear non-proliferation.

* Sweden and Finland will sign on Tuesday the NATO accession protocol to formally join the alliance, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said.

* Spain will urge fellow NATO allies to consider a bigger role for the alliance in North Africa and the Sahel at a summit in Madrid on Thursday, with Spain's foreign minister saying an intervention in Mali should not be ruled out.

* Ukraine and Russia carried out their largest prisoner exchange since the start of the conflict on Feb. 24, the Main Intelligence Directorate of Ukraine's Defense Ministry said Wednesday in a statement on Telegram.

* Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov addressed global food security issues during a telephone conversation with United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Wednesday.

* The Iranian Foreign Ministry said on Wednesday that the Islamic Republic and the EU will remain in contact as always over the next phase of the talks to revive the 2015 nuclear deal as the two-day indirect negotiations between Tehran and Washington ended in Doha.

* Job vacancies in Australia surged to all-time highs in the May quarter as firms struggled to find staff amid a tightening labour market, another sign interest rates are likely to rise further next week.

* Sri Lanka's inflation rose to 54.6% in June, its statistics office said on Thurday - a record level, compared to the previous high of 39.1% in May.

* The government of Bangladesh and the World Bank have signed a 515 million financing agreement to help 9 million people get access to reliable electricity supply while transforming to clean energy, the lender said Thursday.

* The International Monetary Fund (IMF) said on Thursday that they had constructive and productive discussions with the Sri Lankan authorities on economic policies and reforms to be supported by an IMF Extended Fund Facility (EFF) arrangement.

* Ecuadoran President Guillermo Lasso on Wednesday declared a 30-day state of emergency in four provinces of Azuay, Imbabura, Sucumbios and Orellana, citing an escalation of violence in the indigenous protest.

* At least 338 people were killed in the western part of Ethiopia's Oromiya region earlier this month, the Prime Minister's spokeswoman said on Thursday.

* Spain expects tourist arrivals to reach 90% of pre-pandemic volumes during the summer season, as northern Europeans shrug off concerns over inflation pressures and book even more trips than in 2019, a senior tourism official said on Thursday.

* India received 8% lower rainfall than average in June because of scanty rainfall in the central parts of the country, the state-run weather office said on Thursday.

* European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen is no longer in possession of text messages that she exchanged with Pfizer PFE.N chief Albert Bourla to seal a COVID-19 vaccine deal, the Commission said in a letter.

* Turkey has detected its first case of monkeypox in a 37-year-old patient who is in isolation, Health Minister Fahrettin Koca said on Thursday. More than 50 countries where monkeypox is not endemic have reported outbreaks of the viral disease as confirmed cases exceeded 5,100.

* Norway recommends a booster COVID-19 vaccine dose to those who are 75 years and older in response to a rising number of cases, the government said.

* Public health measures related to the COVID-19 pandemic are coming to an end at Finland's border crossing points, authorities said.

* COVID-19 cases in the Americas rose about 14% last week from the previous one, with 1.3 million new cases and 4,158 new deaths reported, the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) said.

* Pfizer Inc PFE.N said on Thursday it is seeking full US approval for its oral COVID-19 antiviral treatment Paxlovid, which is currently available under an emergency use authorization (EUA).

* Eli Lilly and Co LLY.N said it will supply additional doses of its COVID-19 antibody drug to the US government in order to meet demand through late August.

* Pfizer and partner BioNTech SE 22UAy.DE signed a $3.2 billion deal with the US government for 105 million doses of their COVID-19 vaccine, which could be delivered as soon as later this summer.