SEOUL, July 7 (CNA) - South Korea reported more than 1,200 new coronavirus cases in the past 24 hours, the highest daily count since late December, Prime Minister Kim Boo-kyum told a COVID-19 response meeting on Wednesday (Jul 7).

Kim said social distancing measures will be extended for the next few days and officials will consider whether to toughen existing rules as the country battles a fourth wave of the pandemic, fuelled by the highly contagious Delta variant.

The virus was spreading rapidly among unvaccinated people in their 20s and 30s, Kim said, advising people to get test pre-emptively.

Around 30 per cent of the country's population of 52 million people have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.

The highest ever daily caseload reported by South Korea was 1,240, reported on Dec 25, when the country was experiencing a third wave of the pandemic.