May 20, 2020 / 12:50 PM / 14 days ago

PM Johnson vows 'world-beating' track and trace COVID system by June 1

LONDON (Reuters) - British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Wednesday that a programme to track and trace those suspected of having been in contact with people who have tested positive for COVID-19 would be in place by June 1.

He said the government would have recruited 25,000 trackers by the start of next month, capable of tracing 10,000 new cases a day, when the overall number of daily tests would have reached 200,000.

“We have growing confidence that we will have a test, track and test operation that will be world-beating and yes it will be in place by June 1,” Johnson told parliament in exchanges with opposition Labour leader Keir Starmer.

He initially told Starmer that he was confident it would be in place by that date if other conditions were satisfied and it was “entirely provisional”.

Reporting by Elizabeth Piper and Estelle Shirbon; writing by Michael Holden; editing by Stephen Addison

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