Here are the latest COVID-19 updates from Japan and beyond:
As of 11 p.m., Saturday, July 17
- Nearly 80% of 47 prefectural capitals in Japan said they either have changed or intend to change their plans to vaccinate their local residents against COVID-19 amid a supply shortage of vaccines, a Kyodo News survey showed Saturday.
- International Olympic Committee chief Thomas Bach said Saturday he is confident of winning over a skeptical Japanese public and expects a "safe and successful" Tokyo Olympics, despite concerns about coronavirus infections at the games which get under way next week.
- The Tokyo metropolitan government reported on Saturday 1,410 new COVID-19 cases, its highest single-day spike in nearly six months and topping 1,000 for the fourth straight day, as the capital prepares for the opening of the Tokyo Olympics next week.
- Tokyo Olympic organizing committee said Saturday the first positive case of COVID-19 has been detected in the Tokyo athletes' village with less than a week until the opening ceremony.
- Foreign luxury cars priced at more than 10 million yen ($90,830) in Japan are becoming popular among wealthy people who cannot travel abroad amid the coronavirus pandemic and who are willing to spend money on the back of higher global share prices.
As of 11 p.m., Friday, July 16
- Leaders from 21 Pacific-Rim economies, including Japan, the United States and China held informal talks online Friday over the COVID-19 pandemic and economic recovery.
- Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga said Friday he hopes the COVID-19 situation in Japan will improve enough to allow some spectators at the Tokyo Paralympics, as the Olympics are set to kick off next week behind closed doors amid a state of emergency in the capital.
- The Tokyo metropolitan government reported 1,271 new daily COVID-19 cases on Friday, topping 1,000 for the third straight day just a week before the Tokyo Olympics start.
- False claims and misinformation about vaccines on social media are undermining young people's trust in COVID-19 vaccines in Japan, imperiling the government's efforts to finish large-scale inoculations by November as it pursues herd immunity.
- Athletes known to have been in close contact with those infected with the novel coronavirus will still be allowed to compete in the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics if they test negative six hours prior to the event, sources with knowledge of the matter said.