China announces another massive lockdown — Analysis
Some 26 million residents of China’s economic capital of Shanghai will be confined to their homes as Beijing imposes a massive citywide lockdown starting on Monday in a bid to maintain a ‘zero-Covid’ policy.
Two phases will be used to lock down the area. First, Shanghai’s Pudong financial district and nearby areas will be quarantined from Monday to Friday. The second is that Pudong will be handed over to the large downtown area west the Huangpu River. It will then enter a five-day lockdown starting Friday.
To control the growing outbreak, the lockdown will be accompanied by a new round of mass nucleic acid testing across the city, China’s Xinhua reported, citing Shanghai officials. The infection was confirmed in Beijing at 3,500 on Sunday.
Residents are asked to keep their doors closed and stay home.
Groceries can be picked up at the checkpoints and delivered. Shanghai’s other non-essential companies will all close down, allowing employees to work at home.
Beijing is continuing to follow its zero tolerance policy regarding Covid-19. In line with the policy, China’s authorities are free to use public health measures such as mass testing, contact tracing, and lockdowns in order to stop community transmission of the virus as soon as it is detected.
It is important to reduce the spread of new infections in an area affected by an epidemic and to resume normal social and economic activities. Many have criticised the policy, arguing that it is too costly.
Last week, China recorded its largest spike in new Covid infections since the beginning of the pandemic, which led to Beijing’s decision to put over four million residents of the northeastern city of Jilin under a massive lockdown to curb the spread. Shanghai’s new lockdown, which was announced last week is one of the longest in recent years.
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