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Coronavirus live news: Brazil records nearly 600 deaths; Victoria goes 30 days without new cases | World news

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Australia extends Homebuilder scheme until March

The Australian government is extending one of the measures it put in place to try and arrest the economic damage from the Covid-19 pandemic – although at a reduced rate.

The Coalition government extended its Homebuilder scheme until March – when its main stimulus measures, the wage subsidy jobkeeper and the additional Covid supplement to the unemployment benefit, jobseeker, are also due to expire.

The renewed Homebuilder scheme aims to provide a boost to the construction industry, with eligible home builders entitled to a $15,000 grant towards the cost of the build. That’s reduced from $25,000 from when the scheme was first launched earlier this year, but the cap for eligible homes has increased. The three-month extension is expected to see an additional 15,000 homes built on top of the 27,000 homes predicted to be supported by the scheme.

House construction is down in Australia; while 170,000 new homes were built in the last financial year, the Treasury predicts, even with the government scheme, only 140,000 homes will be constructed in the current financial year.

Updated at 7.53pm EST

Hello and welcome to the Guardian’s live coverage of the coronavirus outbreak.

Here are the latest developments:

Brazil has registered 51,922 additional coronavirus cases over the last 24 hours and 587 new deaths, according to the country’s health ministry. In total, Brazil has now registered 6,290,272 total confirmed infectionss and 172,561 deaths since the start of the pandemic.

Victoria, in south-east Australia, recorded its 30th consecutive day without a new Covid-19 cases, with no lives lost on Saturday and just under 6,000 tests conducted. New South Wales has also now gone 22 days without any local transmission.

  • Greece reported 121 coronavirus-related deaths, a daily record, with hospitals in the north of the country under pressure as intensive care beds fill up.
  • Turkey’s daily Covid-19 death toll hit a record high for a sixth consecutive day, with the health ministry recording 182 fatalities within the last 24 hours.

  • In the UK, a further 479 people died within 28 days of testing positive for Covid-19 as of Saturday, down from 521 the previous day. On Saturday, 155 people were arrested at anti-lockdown protests in central London, with offences including breaching coronavirus regulations, assaulting a police officer and possession of drugs.
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