Coronavirus live news: India reports record new infections, deaths; Ireland to reopen economy in May

India’s total case numbers pass 18m; Ireland to reopen retail, personal services and construction; nearly 1 in 50 people worldwide have had Covid

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10.27am BST

Covid-19 case rates in the UK have dropped below 50 cases per 100,000 people in more than 95% of local areas, new analysis by PA shows.

It is the first time since the start of September that as many as 19 in 20 areas have seen their rates plunge below such a symbolic level. Around one in 10 areas are recording rates in single figures.

10.18am BST

Just a very quick Reuters snap here that South Korea’s drug safety ministry has said that Russia’s Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine and a shot developed by Novavax have been submitted for preliminary regulatory approval.

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