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U.S. farming body and Zambian firm partner aim to boost crop yields

An American non-profit organisation has launched a $40 million joint venture with one of Zambia’s top farm suppliers to boost crop yields and food security as farmers struggle to access finance amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the local company said on Sunday. The chairman of African Green Resources (AGR), Zuneid Yousuf, said the private sector deal…

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Indonesia’s oldest zoo reopens with social distancing restrictions

Indonesia’s oldest zoo reopened on Saturday, but to a fraction of the normal number of visitors, after being forced to close more than three months ago because of the coronavirus pandemic. The 156-year-old Ragunan Zoo, located in the capital Jakarta, is home to more than 2,200 animals, including many of the country’s endangered species. The…

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Singapore scientists to start human trials of COVID-19 vaccine in August

Singapore scientists testing a COVID-19 vaccine from U.S. firm Arcturus Therapeutics (ARCT.O) plan to start human trials in August after promising initial responses in mice. More than 100 vaccines are being developed globally, including several already in human trials from the likes of AstraZeneca (AZN.L) and Pfizer (PFE.N), to try and control a disease that…

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China’s factory output perks up but consumers stay cautious

China’s factories stepped up production for a second straight month in May, as the country shook off the economic torpor of the coronavirus, although the weaker-than-expected gain suggested the recovery remained fragile. Patchy data on Monday also showed sustained contractions in retail sales and investment, a sign many sectors were still struggling with the effects…

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Vietnam plans to resume flights to some virus-free countries

Vietnam plans to allow a resumption of flights to and from countries that have had no cases of coronavirus for 30 days, state media cited the prime minister as saying on Tuesday, with priority destinations including Japan, South Korea and Cambodia. In the comments broadcast by Vietnam Television (VTV), Nguyen Xuan Phuc did not specify…

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Indonesia resumes domestic air travel, coronavirus cases jump

Indonesia’s Transport Minister Budi Karya Sumadi said the new regulations for flights followed discussions with airlines, the country’s COVID-19 taskforce and the health ministry.  “Transportation management in the era of the new normal hinges on health aspects,” Sumadi told an online news conference. “We hope that people stay productive, but safe.” All travellers will be…

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