Global COVID-19 Vaccination Drive Gathers Pace As Hennes & Mauritz AB China Woes Escalate

The race to vaccinate over 200 million people in the US is heating up. Texas is joining the fray on becoming the most populous state to expand vaccine eligibility to all adults. With more than 30 million residents, it joins Alaska, which has also made vaccines available to all adults.

COVID-19 Vaccination Drive

However, amid the vaccination drive, the state still has the lowest vaccination rate, with only 12% of the state population fully vaccinated. In addition, only 24% have received at least one shot. In contrast, New Mexico has vaccinated more than 20% of the population, with more than 36% of the population having received at least one vaccine dose.

Britain is another success story in the fight against COVID-19 amid an aggressive vaccination campaign that has seen it move closer to stepping out of lockdown restrictions. More than 30 million people have already received a COVID-19 vaccine shot in the UK, amounting to 57% of the total population. About 7% of adults have had both doses.

The UK vaccination rate outstrips those of European Union nations. The UK intends to have everyone above 18 years vaccinated by July, with the second shot delivered within 12 weeks of the first. The aggressive vaccination campaign has allowed Prime Minister Boris Johnson to ease some of the lockdown restrictions that had curtailed everyday life and economic activities.

Hennes & Mauritz AB Woes

Separately, Hennes & Mauritz AB is at risk of paying a hefty price as Beijing heightens crackdowns on multinationals questioning Xinjiang’s human rights situation. The Swedish retailer stores in some parts of China are being closed by their landlords.

At least six H&M stores have already been closed down in lower-tier cities by owners of the properties. Local media are already reporting that more closures are on the way. The closures come on H&M   posting a statement on its website expressing concerns about forced labour in the far west  Xinjiang region. The region is known for cotton production used in the global apparel supply chain.

With China accounting for 5.2% of its total sales in 2020, things could worsen for H&M.

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