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chinadaily.com.cn 2021-06-22 17:21

A resident receives COVID-19 vaccine in Shenyang, Northeast China's Liaoning province, June 20, 2021. [Photo/Xinhua]

>China administers 1b COVID vaccine doses

More than 1 billion doses of COVID-19 vaccines had been administered in China by Saturday, as the country is pushing ahead with the largest vaccination drive in the history of New China. It took the country just five days to hit its most recent 100-million dose increase, according to daily updates by the National Health Commission.

China accelerated its pace of free COVID-19 vaccinations for the whole nation since late March. It took China 25 days to climb from 100 million doses to 200 million doses, 16 days to increase from 200 million to 300 million, and six days from 800 million to 900 million.

A driver charges his new energy vehicle in Weifang, Shandong province. [Photo by Wang Jilin/For China Daily]

>China's NEV industry on fast track

China's new energy vehicle ownership reached 5.8 million units by late May, accounting for about half of the global total, an industry forum said. The country's NEV sales reached 950,000 units in the first five months of 2021, 2.2 times that of the same period last year, according to data released by the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers at the ongoing 2021 China Auto Forum held in Shanghai. The NEV market penetration rate has reached 8.7 percent, maintaining strong growth momentum, the data showed.

As of April, a total of 65,000 charging stations, 644 power swap stations, and 1.87 million charging piles had been built nationwide, covering 176 cities and more than 50,000 km of highways.

The growth rate of electric vehicle production and sales in the next five years is expected to remain above 40 percent, according to a forecast by the ssociation.

A freight train from the China-Europe Railway Express arrives at a land port in Urumqi, Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region. [Photo/China Daily]

>Freight-train service records over 40,000 trips

The China-Europe freight-train service has recorded more than 40,000 trips, with the transported goods valued at over 200 billion US dollars, official data shows. Since the first China-Europe freight train left southwest China's Chongqing Municipality in March 2011, the service has reached more than 160 cities in 22 European countries, according to information from a work conference of the office of the leading group on advancing Belt and Road development.

The intercontinental rail route is considered a significant part of the Belt and Road Initiative to boost trade between China and countries participating in the initiative.

When the COVID-19 pandemic impeded sea and air transport, the freight-train service emerged as a reliable choice in global logistics thanks to its safety, stability and efficiency.

About 94,000 tons of anti-pandemic supplies were sent through the route, which helped to stabilize the global industrial and supply chains, according to the office.

The trains made 12,406 trips last year, up 50 percent year-on-year, the data shows.

Players of China acknowledge the spectators after winning a Group A match between China and Guam at FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 and AFC Asian Cup China 2023 Preliminary Joint Qualification in Suzhou, East China's Jiangsu province, May 30, 2021. [Photo/Xinhua]

>Fans required to be vaccinated

Qatar will require spectators at the 2022 World Cup to have received coronavirus vaccines to get into games, the government has announced.

Prime Minister Sheikh Khalid bin Khalifa bin Abdulaziz Al Thani told Qatar newspaper editors that the Gulf nation is trying to secure a million vaccine doses to immunize fans wanting to watch the tournament.

"When the date of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 comes, most countries of the world will have vaccinated and immunized their citizens," Sheikh Khalid was quoted as saying by state media on Sunday. "Due to the possibility that some countries will not be able to vaccinate all their citizens, Qatar will not allow fans to enter stadiums without receiving a full vaccination against the virus."

Qatar has recorded 585 deaths and 220,800 cases during the pandemic.

The Middle East's first World Cup is due to start Nov 21, 2022.

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