The Delta variant, first detected in India, may account for 90 per cent of new COVID-19 cases in the European Union (EU) in the next two months.
According to EU’s disease control agency, the dangerous variant of coronavirus is likely to wreak havoc in the continent during summer.
“It is very likely that the Delta variant will circulate extensively during the summer, particularly among younger individuals that are not targeted for vaccination,” European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) director Andrea Ammon said in a statement.
“The Delta variant is more transmissible than other circulating variants and we estimate that by the end of August, it will represent 90 per cent of new cases in the EU,” she added.
According to ECDC, the Delta variant (B.1.617.2) is 40 to 60 per cent more contagious than the Alpha variant (B.1.1.7), which was first identified in the UK and is currently the predominant variant of novel coronavirus in the EU.
ECDC has projected that 70 per cent of fresh SARS-CoV-2 infections will be due to this variant in the EU/EEA by early August and 90 per cent of infections by the end of August.