Professor Gavin J Smith, Local Authorities, Variant, Prof Smith, Cases

Professor Gavin J Smith, Local Authorities

Singapore variant of COVID-19 unlikely to emerge due to low cases: experts

Singapore variant of COVID-19 unlikely to emerge due to low cases: experts

7/4/2021 2:09:00 PM

Singapore variant of COVID-19 unlikely to emerge due to low cases: experts

There is 'little to no chance' that a local variant of the novel coronavirus, or SARS-CoV-2, would emerge in Singapore given the city-state's smaller outbreak of cases, said local infectious diseases experts.

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Changi Airport COVID-19 cluster grows as family members, household contacts of previous cases test positive Singapore calls for de-escalation of violence in Israel and Gaza Singapore Red Cross raises more than S$3.2 million in donations to help India fight COVID-19

a day agoChina, US send warships into disputed waters as tensions rise over Whitsun ReefChina and the United States have sailed aircraft carriers into contentious waters in the East and South China seas, the latest maritime contest between the strategic rivals at a time of heightened tensions in the region. Analysts say their naval presence in the Indo-Pacific at the same time highlights the risk of military conflict between the powers, as Beijing asserts its maritime claims in the region more aggressively and Washington focuses its defence strategy on countering China. It comes amid a deepening dispute between Beijing and Manila over the presence of Chinese vessels – which the Philippines says are a maritime militia but China says are fishing boats – in the Whitsun Reef in the South China Sea. Do you have questions about the biggest topics and trends from around the world? Get the answers with SCMP Knowledge, our new platform of curated content with explainers, FAQs, analyses and infographics brought to you by our award-winning team. The Philippine foreign ministry on Monday said China’s claims that the boats were sheltering from bad weather were “blatant falsehoods” and “clearly [a] false narrative of China’s expansive and illegitimate claims in the West Philippine Sea”. Manila also rejected Beijing’s assertion that the reef in the disputed Spratly Islands was a traditional Chinese fishing ground and again demanded the boats leave the area, in its exclusive economic zone, immediately. “For every day of delay, the Republic of the Philippines will lodge a diplomatic protest,” the statement said. The US, Japan and Indonesia also stepped up pressure on China over the dispute last week. On Sunday, a US aircraft carrier strike group led by the USS Theodore Roosevelt entered the South China Sea from the Strait of Malacca, according to the Beijing-based South China Sea Strategic Situation Probing Initiative, citing satellite data. It said the USS Mustin guided-missile destroyer was also operating in the East China Sea and edged close to China’s Yangtze River on Saturday. Meanwhile, Chinese aircraft carrier the Liaoning passed through the Miyako Strait off southwestern Japan on Saturday, days after China’s defence ministry urged Japan to “stop all provocative moves” over the contested Diaoyu Islands in the East China Sea, which Tokyo calls the Senkakus. The PLA Navy announced on social media on Monday night that the Liaoning was en route to conduct “scheduled exercises” near Taiwan, to “test the effectiveness of troop training, and to improve the capacity to safeguard the country’s sovereignty, safety and development interests”. Similar naval exercises would continue to be organised as planned, it said. Tokyo has repeatedly voiced concerns over China’s new coastguard law that allows its quasi-military force to use weapons against foreign ships seen as illegally entering Chinese waters, and over the increased presence of China’s coastguard in waters near the contested islands. Regional tensions have also been rising over Taiwan, where Beijing has in recent months ramped up “grey zone” warfare tactics against the democratic island it claims as its own. Ten People’s Liberation Army fighter jets entered Taiwan’s southwest air defence identification zone on Monday, after Chinese Y-8 military aircraft flew near the island on Saturday and Sunday, Taiwan’s defence ministry said. The US also conducted a series of military exercises with its allies in the region last week, including with Japan in the East China Sea, with Australia in the eastern Pacific and with India in the Indian Ocean. Ben Schreer, a professor of strategic studies at Macquarie University in Sydney, said the US aircraft carrier’s passage in the South China Sea was meant to counter Beijing’s vast claims over the waters and signal to allies, such as the Philippines, that Washington was a “reliable and capable treaty ally”. India joins French-led naval exercise, revealing clues about Quad’s plans to contain China in Indo-Pacific At the same time, the Liaoning’s patrol in the East China Sea sought to demonstrate Beijing’s ambitions to use its own carrier strike group to defend what it saw as its core territorial interests, he said. “It’s a signal to Japan, the US and other powers in the region that the [Chinese navy] is gradually developing a carrier capability, though at present it’s nowhere near [achieving this],” he said. Collin Koh, a research fellow from the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies at Singapore’s Nanyang Technological University, said Washington was signalling its commitment to maintaining a credible military presence in the region to its allies and seeking to deter Beijing from “any drastic actions” amid the Whitsun Reef saga. The US also carried out naval exercises during a stand-off between China and Malaysia in the South China Sea last year, he said. Koh said the PLA Navy’s activities in the region, including its latest transit in the Miyako Strait, sought to underline its “ability to operate … against perceived American-led containment of China’s maritime interests”. “The crowding of regional waters with rival maritime forces does create concerns about the risk of an accidental or inadvertent clash,” he said. “The onus will again be on … both sides to professionally interact with each other.” Xue Chen, a research fellow at the Shanghai Institutes for International Studies, echoed that view, saying there was a risk of human error in “high-stress situations” and noting the US air and naval forces had increased the frequency and scale of their activities in the East and South China seas and were going closer to Chinese territory. He said the USS Theodore Roosevelt’s presence in the South China Sea appeared to be a message to China but did not believe it was related to the Whitsun Reef dispute.More from South China Morning Post:South China Sea: will the Whitsun Reef dispute come between Beijing and Manila?South China Sea: Philippines says Whitsun Reef dispute shows China intends to occupy more ‘features’Philippines repeats call for Chinese ships to leave Whitsun Reef This article China, US send warships into disputed waters as tensions rise over Whitsun Reef first appeared on South China Morning PostFor the latest news from the South China Morning Post download our mobile app. Copyright 2021.

2 days agoSouth China Morning PostCredit Suisse to cut dividend, overhaul senior management and book US$4.7 billion in first-quarter loss from Archegos falloutCredit Suisse said it expects to post a pre-tax loss in its firs-quarter results due on April 22, inclusive of a charge from Archegos Capital Management’s trading losses, becoming one of the largest casualties in the world’s biggest margin call. The Zurich-based bank will book a charge of 4.4 billion Swiss francs (US$4.7 billion) in the first three months due to losses at a US hedge fund, Credit Suisse said without naming the fund. The charge will push Credit Suisse into a pre-tax loss of around 900 million francs (US$960 million) in the quarter, cancelling out the profit growth in its asset management unit helped particularly by its Asia Pacific division, the bank said in a trading update on Tuesday, adding that figures are still subject to finalisation and review. “The significant loss in our Prime Services business relating to the failure of a US-based hedge fund is unacceptable,” the bank’s chief executive Thomas Gottstein said in a statement, adding that the case had caused “significant concerns” among stakeholders. “Together with the board of directors, we are fully committed to addressing these situations. Serious lessons will be learned.”Do you have questions about the biggest topics and trends from around the world? Get the answers with SCMP Knowledge, our new platform of curated content with explainers, FAQs, analyses and infographics brought to you by our award-winning team. Archegos’ blowout came to light on March 28, when Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley were reported to be among the Wall Street banks and brokers that forced-sold leveraged positions taken by a hedge fund founded by former Tiger Asia trader Bill Hwang. The fund’s financial exposure was estimated at between US$10 billion and US$50 billion. Since the forced selling, Credit Suisse and Japan’s Nomura Holdings said they had incurred losses in connection to Archegos. The episode would scupper the strong growth seen in at Credit Suisse’s investment banking, wealth and asset management businesses combined. The bank’s Asia Pacific business had already been hit by sizeable losses in 2020 linked to entrepreneur Lu Zhengyao, whose Luckin Coffee was expelled from the Nasdaq market amid an accounting scandal. Credit Suisse was the lead underwriter for Luckin’s 2019 initial public offering. The Swiss bank first revealed on March 29 that it was expecting “highly significant” loss in its first quarter as a result of trading losses tied to the highly-leveraged portfolio of Archegos. The bank employs about 48,770 people globally. Due to the Archegos-related losses, the board of Credit Suisse has proposed cutting total dividend payout for the 2020 financial year to 0.1 franc per share, from the 0.2926 franc per share originally proposed. The dividend cut is part of the agenda of the annual shareholders’ general meeting scheduled on April 30. The Swiss bank is among one of the prime brokerages hit by the Archegos fallout, which also counts Nomura Holdings, MUFG and Mizuho among other lenders facing big losses. While Credit Suisse did not offer additional details on the Archegos losses, media reports said the bank unloaded about US$2.3 billion worth of stocks tied to the Archegos blow-up more than a week after rival brokers and banks dumped their shares and skirted losses. These block trades were tied to the shares of ViacomCBS, Farfetch, the Chinese e-commerce platform Vipshop and the dominant Chinese internet search engine Baidu. Brian Chin, chief executive of the investment bank, and Lara Warner, chief risk and compliance officer will step down from their roles, effective April 30 and April 6 respectively. Thomas Grotzer, who previously served as General counsel and an executive board member at Credit Suisse (Schweiz), will step down from these roles and become interim global head of compliance with immediate effect, the bank said. Joachim Oechslin is appointed as interim Chief Risk Officer. Chin’s role will be taken over by Christian Meissner, who has served as Credit Suisse’s co-head of international wealth management investment banking advisory and vice-chairman of investment banking since October 2020. All three newly-appointed executives will report to the chief executive Gottstein. Separately, chairman Urs Rohner has also proposed to waive his 1.5 million francs in chairman fees. This item has already been approved by the board.More from South China Morning Post:Credit Suisse unloads US$2.3 billion of stocks linked to Bill Hwang’s Archegos as bank chief departs in management shake-upCredit Suisse targets Luckin Coffee ex-billionaire’s family assets to recoup losses after stock toastHere’s how Luckin Coffee, the ‘poster child’ and ‘dream client’ of Credit Suisse, turned into the bank’s worst nightmareCredit Suisse out of Tencent-backed WeDoctor’s Hong Kong IPO after Luckin Coffee’s accounting scandalPicking up the pieces of Bill Hwang’s Archegos Capital blowup: Credit Suisse weighs replacing risk chief in looming executive shake upThis article Credit Suisse to cut dividend, overhaul senior management and book US$4.7 billion in first-quarter loss from Archegos fallout first appeared on South China Morning PostFor the latest news from the South China Morning Post download our mobile app. Copyright 2021. headtopics.com

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1.8 million people have received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine: Health minister

A total of 1.2 million people have completed the full vaccination regimen, says Mr Gan Kim Yong.

Don't speak too soon. Once we open up our travel it may surge

Risk from COVID-19 variants remains after first Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine, UK study findsLONDON :A single dose of Pfizer's coronavirus vaccine may not generate a sufficient immune response to protect against dominant new variants, ... 所以那些還沒有完成接種第二針疫苗的國家是不能對印度,巴基斯坦,尼泊爾,斯里蘭卡開放的。 3rd and 4th doses coming your way. Then 5th and 6th......... WHILE VIRYS MUTATES

All American adults to be eligible for COVID-19 vaccine by Apr 19: BidenWASHINGTON: US President Joe Biden on Tuesday (Apr 6) moved up the COVID-19 vaccine eligibility target for all American adults to Apr 19, but ...

Biden targets Apr 19 for wider US COVID-19 vaccine deliveryPresident Joe Biden will announce on Tuesday (Apr 6) that the United States has administered 150 million COVID-19 shots since he took office and ...

Most COVID-19 business capacity limits to end in New York region on May 19New York, New Jersey and Connecticut will lift most of their coronavirus capacity restrictions on businesses, including retail stores, food ...

Sweden registers 7,736 new COVID-19 cases, 19 deaths on ThursdaySweden, which has shunned lockdowns throughout the pandemic, registered 7,736 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday, health agency statistics showed.

7 more workers at Westlite Woodlands dorm test positive for Covid-19, bringing total to 19SINGAPORE — Seven more workers from the Westlite Woodlands dormitory have tested positive for Covid-19 after recovering from past infections, bringing the total number of cases at the dormitory to 19, the Ministry of Manpower clarified on Thursday (April 22). Must have returned India and back... It's normal. Vaccine working. Give it some time. Ensure that they spread more to do litmus test to the said vaccine.