Italy claims to have become the first EU country to have surpassed one million Covid-19 vaccinations.

Almost 2% of the population have now received the vaccine.

Italy ranks sixth in the world for the number of vaccinations and second in Europe. 

The UK has delivered more than four million first doses of anti-Covid vaccinations.

Italy began phase one of its vaccination programme on December 27 and has already vaccinated all national health staff.

The aim is to have all over-80s, and care home residents vaccinated by the end of January, bringing the total number to two million. 

Phase two, to be rolled out from February to June, aims to vaccinate a further 21 million people, including those with underlying health conditions, teachers, and over-60s.

Phase three will offer vaccinations to all essential service workers, and phase four will see the rest of the population potentially vaccinated by the end of the year. 

Flavio Zappacosta, UK and Ireland manager for the Italian State Tourist Office (ENIT), said: “We are very pleased to have hit one million doses of the Covid-19 vaccine, just 19 day after the nationwide vaccination programme was launched.

“With our plans in place, we will see the second phase of vaccinations being rolled out next month with the hope to see a significant impact later in the year.

“Tourism is one of our most important industries and we are taking every measure possible to ensure Italy is a safe destination to travel to.

“With the continuation of the vaccine roll out, we hope to establish consumer confidence in visiting Italy once again when it is safe to do so. It is certainly a positive milestone for the destination and is seen as a step forward in our recovery for the travel industry.”