TOKYO -- Japan's House of Representatives was dissolved after the reading out the rescript of dissolution at the plenary meeting on Thursday for a general election.
The general election will be held on Oct. 31 after the four-year term of lower house members expires on Oct. 21.
In Japan's postwar history, this will be the first time that a general election is scheduled after the term has expired. In addition, the period between the dissolution of the lower house and the voting day will be the shortest. (Japan-Lower House Dissolution)
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CANBERRA -- Australia has reported a new record number of COVID-19 cases as the country continues to battle the third wave of infections.
On Thursday morning, there were 2,749 new locally-acquired coronavirus cases reported across Australia, beating the previous record of more than 2,500 set on Saturday. Eighteen new deaths were reported.
ACT Chief Minister Andrew Barr acknowledged that lockdown has been difficult for Canberrans but warned that its end does not remove the threat of COVID-19. (Australia-Canberra-COVID-19)
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SINGAPORE -- The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) on Thursday announced that it will raise slightly the slope of the Singapore dollar Nominal Effective Exchange Rate (S$NEER) policy band, up from zero percent previously.
This indicates the central bank has tightened its monetary policy.
According to the authority, Singapore's MAS Core Inflation, which excludes the costs of accommodation and private transport, rose to a year-on-year 1.1 percent in July-August, from 0.7 percent in the second quarter of this year. (Singapore-Monetary Policy-Tightening)
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VIENTIANE -- The sixth batch of China-donated Sinopharm COVID-19 vaccines has been handed over to the Lao side upon arrival at the Lao capital Vientiane on Wednesday.
Chinese Ambassador to Laos Jiang Zaidong, after handing over the one million doses of vaccines to Lao Deputy Prime Minister and Chairman of the National Taskforce Committee for COVID-19 Prevention and Control Kikeo Khaykhamphithoune, said the COVID-19 outbreak is spreading around the world, and the epidemic situation in Laos is still developing. (Laos-China-Vaccine Donation)