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Pursuing a “Zero COVID” policy

Postscript: China locked down as the rest of the world opened up


Mark Schiefelbein/AP

Pursuing a “Zero COVID” policy
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A man prepared to receive a throat swab at an office in Beijing, China, on April 29 (above). Draconian COVID lockdowns in April left China’s economy reeling. As countries across the world lifted COVID restrictions, the Chinese Communist Party’s Politburo held to a “zero COVID” policy that closed off several cities, including manufacturing hubs such as Shanghai, to outside travel as COVID cases rose. In Shanghai, the government sealed off buildings and communities, confining millions of residents to their homes. The April lockdowns brought Chinese manufacturing activity to a six-month low, according to China’s National Bureau of Statistics. The monthly Purchasing Managers’ Index fell to 47.4, on a scale in which a number lower than 50 indicates a contraction. In early May, as Shanghai and other cities began to open up, China’s capital city of Beijing began closing theme parks, banning dining in at restaurants, and requiring a negative COVID test to take public transit or to enter supermarkets in an attempt to keep COVID cases from rising there.

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