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The Recap: Catch-Ups, Hyperloops & a Solar Eclipse

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European Parliament and Commission clash on temporary waiver of Covid-19 vaccine patents: The EP called for the temporary lifting of intellectual property rights protection for Covid-19 vaccines to address global production constraints and supply shortages, in contradiction with the Commission’s stance.

Plastic production and consumption fell during the pandemic: For only the third time since the beginning of the industrial era, annual global plastic production fell in 2020 due to the Covid-19 health crisis, the European plastics producers’ association announced Thursday.

EU Covid Certificate available in Belgium from next week: The European ‘Digital Covid Certificate’ will be available in Belgium from next week Wednesday 16 June, according to Federal Health Minister Frank Vandenbroucke.

Up to 27 °C expected in the coming days: Belgium’s temperatures will reach up to 27 °C in the next few days, the Royal Meteorological Institute (RMI) announced on Thursday.

Solar Eclipse went well, say Belgian Astronomers: The observation of the partial eclipse of the Sun went very well despite the presence of some clouds, the French-speaking Federation of Amateur Astronomers of Belgium (FFAAB) and the Mira Public Observatory said on Thursday.

Belgium could offer asylum to 30 Afghan translators: The Belgian government could offer asylum to up to 30 translators who worked for Belgian troops in Afghanistan, defence minister Ludivine Dedonder (PS) has suggested.

Holidaymakers can still get second shot during ‘catch-up’ in late August: People who missed their second vaccination because of holiday plans, for example, during the summer will get a catch-up opportunity from the end of August, according to the Flemish Care and Health Agency.

Travelling at 1,000 km/h: Flanders analysing use of ‘hyperloop’: Flanders is analysing what role it could play in the rollout of the “hyperloop” network, a new mode of transport previously invested in by Elon Musk that allows goods and people to travel in pods through tubes at speeds of up to 1,000 km/h.

Under-41s can voluntarily get Johnson & Johnson vaccine from next week: People under 41 years old will soon be able to still get the Johnson & Johnson vaccine on a voluntary basis, announced Flemish Welfare Minister Wouter Beke after the interministerial health conference.

90% of Africa at risk of missing immunisation targets: Nearly 90% of African countries will not meet the global target of vaccinating one-tenth of their population by September unless they urgently receive at least 225 million doses of coronavirus vaccine.

Child labour grows for first time in 20 years, says Unicef: Child labour across the world grew by 8.4 million in the past four years to 160 million, the first increase in the figures for almost 20 years, according to the latest report from Unicef and the International Labour Organisation (ILO).

The Brussels Times