Half of all adults in Britain have now had at least one COVID-19 vaccine dose, making the country the world’s first major economy to hit that milestone, health minister Matt Hancock said on Saturday.
Britain reached that figure after administering a record 660,276 shots a day earlier, Hancock said. Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who had AstraZeneca’s vaccination on Friday, tweeted “Let’s keep going”.
Israel is the leader in vaccinating its population, followed by the United Arab Emirates, Chile, then the United Kingdom – and investors are watching closely to see which economies show the first signs of recovery.
Britain’s government has said it is aiming to give at least one shot to everyone over 50 by mid-April, and to every adult by the end of July. Over that period, it has plans to ease lockdown restrictions, with shops, pubs and restaurants preparing to re-open next month.