But the company said the delay in reporting data from Saxony’s large state could be one reason for the sharp increase.
Data were not sent from Saxony on Monday, so Wednesday’s report contains missing numbers for Monday and Tuesday.
The daily increase in cases set for December 11 was 29,875.
As the country faces a frightening upsurge in corona virus infections, hospitalizations and deaths, German leaders have issued warnings in recent days.
The RKI chief said on Tuesday that the situation was “as serious as it was during these epidemics.”
“At the moment, more and more people are affected by the epidemic,” Lothar Weiler said.
German Health Minister Jens Spann has called on the European Medicines Agency (EMA) to work with several European countries to approve the vaccine soon.
He said Germany would be ready to vaccinate residents “two to four days” after approval.
“The goal is to get approval before Christmas,” Spann told reporters at a news conference: “We want to start vaccinating in Germany by the end of this year.”
President Frank-Walter Steinmeier addressed the nation in a rare speech on Monday, saying the situation was “deadly serious.”
“From Wednesday, our public and private life will be more regulated than we have ever seen in the history of the Federal Republic of Germany,” he said, adding that “drastic measures” were inevitable.
A week ago, Merkel warned the German parliament that the nationwide restrictions introduced on November 2 were ineffective and that action was needed to stem the rapid growth in figures.
“If we had more contact now before Christmas, if it turned out to be the last Christmas with grandparents, we would have failed. We should not have done that,” he said in an unusually emotional speech.
Jude Rexroth, head of RKI’s monitoring unit, said the number of infections and deaths was rising, and that the number of infections in German care homes was twice as high as the first corona virus spike in the spring of this year.
Shocking new figures are causing great concern and could send the world’s fourth-largest economy into another recession. This represents a clear warning to other countries struggling with the Govt-19 winter uprising.
An earlier version of the story misrepresented Saxony’s figures released on Wednesday. They include Monday and Tuesday.
CNN’s Emma Reynolds and Nadine Schmidt contributed to the report.