What You Should Know
- Colombia: Amid the country’s deadliest COVID-19 month, protests sparked by a planned pandemic-related tax hike and the ensuing police response have resulted in at least 25 dead.
- Mexico: At least 24 people were killed and dozens more injured after a deadly train crash in Mexico City subway’s Golden Line. Engineers have for years warned the government of the line’s structural weaknesses.
- PAHO: Director Carissa Etienne urges countries with extra COVID-19 vaccine doses to consider donating them to the Americas.
- 1 in 4: Cases in Latin America and the Caribbean continue to climb, and about 25 percent of global COVID-19 deaths last week were reported in the Americas.
Health + Innovation
- Chile: A global leader in COVID-19 vaccination, Chile is considering rolling out two government-issued ID cards — a domestic card and an international passport – to continue incentivizing inoculation.
- 100 million: The number of COVID-19 vaccine doses administered in Latin America and the Caribbean, as of earlier this week.
- Jamaica: USAID is providing $2 million in equipment to help Jamaica fight the COVID-19 pandemic. Equipment delivered includes oxygen devices, ICU beds, ventilators, cellphones, COVID-19 prevention banners, laptops, and tablets.
- AstraZeneca: The drugmaker revealed that supply shortages are slowing down production of its COVID-19 vaccines in Latin America. AstraZeneca assures it will be able to meet its commitment to deliver 150 million doses to the region this year.
- Europe: The European Medicines Agency announced it has begun reviewing China’s Sinovac vaccine for efficacy. A previous study from Chile showed two Sinovac doses were 56 percent effective in protecting against COVID-19.
- WHO Approval: On May 7, the WHO approved the emergency use of the Chinese COVID-19 vaccine Sinopharm, which will now be included in Covax.
Economies in Focus
- The Colombia peso fell 0.6 percent amid widespread protests after the government withdrew a proposed tax reform bill.
- Peru’s sol dropped 0.4 percent to 3.8 per dollar, as concerns weigh over presidential candidate Pedro Castillo who currently leads the polls ahead of the run-off election in June.
- The Mexican economy shrank by 3.8 percent in Q1 year-on-year, but grew 0.4 percent compared to the previous three-month period.
- Panama’s port activity grew by 7.5 percent in Q1 year-on-year.
- Chile’s economy grew 6.4 percent in March year-on-year, its biggest jump since 2018.
Quarantines + Travel Restrictions
Quarantines + reopenings
- Argentina is entering a new phase of measures to curb its second Covid-19 wave, which includes greater restrictions in the Buenos Aires Metropolitan Area. The measures, lasting until May 21, include a prohibition on movement between 8:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m.
Border and travel restrictions
- Guatemala lifted its State of Prevention, however, restricted entry into the country remains in place (with exceptions) for individuals who have visited Brazil, United Kingdom, and South Africa in the past fourteen days.
- On May 3, Barbados announced updated travel protocols effective May 8 that include presenting a negative PCR test three days prior to travel and upon arrival for both fully vaccinated and unvaccinated travelers. Unvaccinated travelers and those who have visited Brazil, India, or South Africa within the last twenty-one days will have to complete mandatory quarantine periods.
- Suriname issued emergency restrictions, banning all flights from Brazil until further notice and limiting flights from the United States and the Caribbean to two flights per week. Restrictions also include curfews until May 10.
By the numbers
- Vaccinations per capita (vaccines administered per 100 people):Chile (79) #6 worldwide, Uruguay (55) #15 worldwide, Dominica (39) #20 worldwide, Antigua and Barbuda (31) #46 worldwide, Barbados (26) #51 worldwide, Saint Kitts and Nevis (22) #54 worldwide, Brazil (21) #55 worldwide, Dominican Republic (19) #58 worldwide, Costa Rica (19) #60 worldwide, Argentina (18) #61 worldwide, Panama (16) #63 worldwide, Source: nytimes.com
- Deaths per capita (deaths per million people): Brazil (1,926) #3 worldwide, Argentina (1,432) #11 worldwide, Colombia (1,473) #12 worldwide, Mexico (1,674) #15 worldwide, Peru (1,879) #17 worldwide, Chile (1,387) #23 worldwide, Ecuador (1,056) #45 worldwide, Panama (1,429) #47 worldwide, Bolivia (1,104) #56 worldwide, Paraguay (993) #58 worldwide, Source: worldometers.info