Johnson & Johnson could apply for EMA approval in February

Johnson & Johnson could apply for EMA approval in February

US pharmaceutical company Johnson & Johnson may submit an official application for approval of its Covid-19 vaccine to the European Medicines Agency (EMA) in February, according to European Health Commissioner Stella Kyriakides. Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine would be the fourth, after that of Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna (which are both already being administered) and AstraZeneca/Oxford (for which an application was submitted on Monday) that could be approved. The vaccine, “Ad26.COV2.S”, is administered in a single dose, and has been undergoing a rolling review by the EMA since the beginning of December….

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Belgium passes mark of 670,000 coronavirus infections

Belgium passes mark of 670,000 coronavirus infections

More than 670,000 Belgians have been infected with coronavirus as daily infections continue to rise, according to the latest figures published by the Sciensano public health institute on Thursday. Between 4 and 10 January, an average of 2,082.7 new people tested positive per day over the past week, which is a 28% increase compared to the week before. The total number of confirmed cases in Belgium since the beginning of the pandemic is 670,249. The total reflects all people in Belgium who have been infected, and includes confirmed active cases…

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Scottish fish can’t find its way to Europe, Brexit and COVID are to blame

Scottish fish can’t find its way to Europe, Brexit and COVID are to blame

Scottish fishermen are finding it impossible to sell their catches to the continent because of administrative delays associated with the new rules on trade between the UK and the EU. The problem is that the delays mean that by the time the fish landed by Scottish boats arrives at auction, it is no longer fresh enough to meet the demands of traders and customers. As a result, The Independent reports, the price of some fish have collapsed by as much as 80%. The British fishing industry exports 70% of its…

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Christmas hamsters push Tesco sales to the records

Christmas hamsters push Tesco sales to the records

Tesco saw “record” sales over Christmas as customers spoiled themselves in lockdown with online orders of deluxe range products. UK like-for-like sales were up 8.1% in the six weeks to 9 January as the supermarket saw a 14% jump in demand for goods in its Tesco Finest range. Sales of vegan Christmas alternatives also surged, it added. Big grocers have benefited at a time when non-essential shops and restaurants are closed due to Covid. Tesco said customers had “looked for more opportunities to treat themselves” as the UK faced strict…

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Amazon faces legal challenge over Prime cancellation policy

Amazon faces legal challenge over Prime cancellation policy

Amazon is being challenged by consumer watchdogs in Europe and the US over its use of manipulative “dark pattern” design to promote its Prime service. The Norwegian Consumer Council (NCC) found that cancelling a subscription required scrolling through six pages and making several complex choices. It has filed a legal complaint with Norway’s consumer protection authority claiming the design breaches EU law. Amazon rejected claims the process was unfair or difficult. In the US, consumer watchdog Public Citizen is also filing a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission. And consumer…

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Mukhtar Ablyazov business in 2000s: fake loans with real money vanished

Mukhtar Ablyazov business in 2000s: fake loans with real money vanished

Mukhtar Ablyazov is one of the most controversial political refugees in EU. Ablyazov’s line of defence is to proclaim any criminal cases against him as politically motivated. Here is a fresh one. Is it political in nature? It’s for you to decide. Mukhtar Ablyazov, a corrupt ex-statesman turned politician, has an impressive collection of an unique kind. It is the collection of convictions he got in absentia. There are plenty, including those in Russia, Ukraine, Moldavia, Britain and Kazakhstan. The latest addition is 15 years term in Russia. They do…

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FTSE 100 suffers worst year since financial crisis

FTSE 100 suffers worst year since financial crisis

Pension savers and investors’ nest-eggs have been hit as the UK’s leading share index had its worst year since the height of the financial crisis. The FTSE 100 index fell 14.3% over the year, marking its worst performance since 2008, when it slumped 31.3%. Despite the poor performance, the blue-chip index has recovered significantly since the start of the global pandemic when it was a third lower than now. Analysts have said that next year is likely to be better for investors. “The factors which worked against the FTSE-100 in…

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New Covid-19 restrictions leave UK travellers stranded in German airports

New Covid-19 restrictions leave UK travellers stranded in German airports

Passengers on several flights from the UK to Germany were left stranded in German airports on Sunday night due to measures over a new coronavirus strain in the UK. A group of 63 passengers who flew from the UK to Hanover was not allowed to leave the airport immediately, having to pass a coronavirus test first. Tests were carried out at the airport by medical personnel. The results of those tests will probably be known on Monday. In the meantime, cots were installed in the airport for passengers to spend…

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Brussels Airport boosts its coronavirus testing capacity

Brussels Airport boosts its coronavirus testing capacity

Brussels Airport will carry out four times more coronavirus tests at its testing centre from Friday, the private laboratory Eurofins announced on Thursday. The Airport is ramping up its capacity from 2,000 to 8,000 tests per day in support of new measures for taken by Belgium’s Consultative Committee. Those measures include a mandatory PCR test on day 1 and 7 after return to Belgium. The airport will be increasing its testing capacity from 125 to 300 tests per hour on Friday, and will add a testing centre in the arrivals…

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What’s open in Belgium on 1 January?

What’s open in Belgium on 1 January?

As the first public holiday of the year, 1 January will see many shops and businesses – which are allowed to be open under the current coronavirus measures – close down for the day. As with other public holidays, public and administration services, such as postal services, will not operate on 1 January, and neither will banks. Some Carrefour shops will be open on New Year’s Day, as well as some of Delhaize’s smaller Shop’n’Go markets, but Aldi and Lidl will remain mostly closed on the first. Colruyt shops will…

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