Hong Kong – While the world is moving on with Covid, relaxing strict lockdowns and mask mandates, China has suddenly reversed back to where it was 2 years back when the pandemic began – sending millions of people residing in Jilin, including Shenzhen and Dongguan cities, into lockdown.
“China is sending tens of millions of people into lockdown after a fourfold jump in cases in a week,” ABC news Tweeted.
China has recently encountered another severe Covid peak as the country reported 1,437 Covid cases across several cities on Monday, despite relentlessly pursuing the ‘Zero-Covid’ strategy.
While the growing numbers in the Covid cases test the country’s resilience of a no-tolerance approach, there is no indication that it is ready to pivot to ‘living with the virus.”
Northeastern Jilin province serves as the epicenter of the current Covid peak, with 895 cases reported. However, there has been news of outbreaks in Shanghai and Shenzhen as well.
On Monday, the country officials announced a lockdown in place, saying, “all 24 million people in Jilin province would go into lockdown,” including Changchun.
The current lockdown in China is the first provincial one since the ones in Hubei and Wuhan in January 2020.
On Sunday, the Chinese government ordered the entire 17.5 million of Shenzhen’s population into a straight 7-day lockdown along with 3 rounds of testing. All business and public transport will remain halted, except for essential services till March 20.
The 7-day lockdown and growing cases in China resulted in big suppliers like Foxconn relocating their plants elsewhere.
““Companies in Shenzhen are literally screwed right now” Apple supplier Foxconn shuts plants as Covid outbreak in China grows,” a source Tweeted.
Hong Kong University professor Heiwai Tang said that these week-long lockdowns wouldn’t affect the country’s GDP.
“It seems the lockdowns will be shorter this time with more tracking, which means a short disruption of work and production,” said the professor. “If it ends up lasting for weeks it’s another issue, including inflation risks.” Another professor of Hong Kong’s Chinese University said that the previous two-month lockdown cost China around 2% of its GDP.