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Foxconn relaxes COVID restrictions in Chinese factory

Workers protested Foxconn's COVID policies in October. Associated Press/Photo by Chiang Ying-ying

Foxconn relaxes COVID restrictions in Chinese factory

Foxconn Technology Group, the world’s largest manufacturer of Apple iPhones, rolled out a plan Thursday to loosen COVID-19 restrictions in its factory in central China. Thousands of workers in October walked out of a huge factory in Zhengzhou to protest what they said were unsafe working conditions and poor living arrangements amid a COVID-19 breakout and lockdown protocols. Foxconn said on Thursday that it would end its so-called “closed loop” policy that kept the workers at their dormitories and workplaces to prevent virus spread. It also said the cafeterias would reopen. Foxconn’s announcement comes a week after the Chinese government lifted many of its zero-COVID policies.

How is China handling looser restrictions? While China is no longer trying to track every case of COVID-19, Beijing and other cities seem to be experiencing surges—for instance, Beijing has reportedly seen a surge in purchases of cold medication and testing kits. The country’s new COVID policy that began last week ended requirements for frequent testing and loosened quarantine procedures.

Dig deeper: Read Erica Kwong’s report in World Tour about how China’s zero-COVID policy has affected Chinese citizens.

Lauren Canterberry

Lauren Canterberry is a reporter for WORLD. She graduated from the World Journalism Institute and the University of Georgia with a degree in journalism, both in 2017. She worked as a local reporter in Texas and now lives in Georgia with her husband.

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