Source: Socialist Republic of Vietnam
* A global energy crunch is expected to boost oil demand by half a million barrels per day (bpd) and could stoke inflation and slow the world’s recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said on Thursday.
* OPEC leader Saudi Arabia dismissed calls for speedier oil output increases on Thursday, saying its efforts with allies were enough and protecting the oil market from the wild price swings seen in natural gas and coal markets.
* China will send three astronauts to an unfinished space station early on Saturday, including the first female crew member to visit the station, where they are due to stay for six months. It will be the second of four planned crewed missions to the station, which is due to be completed by the end of next year.
* US Trade Representative Katherine Tai on Thursday affirmed the Biden administration’s commitment to the World Trade Organization (WTO), saying that reforms were possible as the body readies for a major ministerial conference next month.
* Russia reported a record 986 coronavirus-related deaths in the last 24 hours and 31,299 new cases, its highest one-day infection tally since the pandemic began.
* Britain’s defences against COVID-19 are working and the pandemic situation is currently stable, health minister Sajid Javid said.
* The French government will ask lawmakers to extend its pandemic state of emergency until July 31 next year to deal with the continuing coronavirus crisis, spokesman Gabriel Attal said.
* Vaccination rates against COVID-19 in the United States have risen by more than 20 percentage points after multiple institutions adopted vaccine requirements, while case numbers and deaths from the virus are down, Biden administration officials said.
* Russia will lift its COVID-19 ban on flights to countries including Tunisia, Thailand, the Netherlands, Sweden, Norway, Iran, Slovenia, and Oman from Nov. 9, the government coronavirus task force said.
* Japan’s government will begin preparations to restart a popular subsidised travel programme that was suspended late last year due to the pandemic, Prime Minister Kishida Fumio said.
* New Zealand reported its biggest rise in infections in six weeks, with all cases detected in Auckland, raising prospects of a further extension of lockdown restrictions in the country’s largest city beyond next week.
* Australia has cancelled its men’s and women’s Open tournaments in a hammer blow for the struggling domestic game as COVID-19 and travel restrictions continue to bite.
* The US government will ship 2.4 million doses of vaccine to Pakistan on Thursday, a White House official said.
* World markets stayed focused on rising inflation on Thursday as tech stocks rebooted global equities, oil and gas prices fired up again but the dollar and benchmark government bond yields both stalled.
* The oil market continues to face uncertainties stemming from the pandemic, OPEC Secretary General Mohammad Barkindo told reporters on the sidelines of an energy forum in Moscow.
* Germany’s top economic institutes cut their joint forecast for 2021 growth in Europe’s largest economy to 2.4% as supply bottlenecks hampered manufacturing, but they raised their prediction for next year.
* Bulgaria will submit its recovery plan to the European Commission on Friday to allow access to billions of euros of pandemic aid, interim Prime Minister Stefan Yanev said.
* Ireland raised doubts over its plans to drop almost all COVID-19 restrictions next week due to a rise in cases, with Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe saying a full return of office workers was now unlikely.
* Nigeria will require civil servants to show proof of vaccination or a negative test for the disease to gain access to their offices from the beginning of December, a presidential committee said on Wednesday.
* A Taliban delegation led by Afghanistan’s foreign minister will hold talks in Turkey on Thursday with Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu, a spokesman for Afghanistan’s foreign ministry said.