China brushes aside quarantine rules that come in a decisive break with the zero-Kovid regime

China brushes aside quarantine rules that come in a decisive break with the zero-Kovid regime
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China will lift quarantine requirements for inbound travelers from January 8, as it eradicates the remnants of the zero-Kovid regime that has shut itself down from the rest of the world for almost three years.

The National Health Commission announced the move on Monday as part of a broader announcement that has downgraded the country’s management against Covid-19, a virus currently ravaging the country, and definitively abandons a number of other preventive measures.

The NHC said more than 90 percent of omicron variant cases were “mild or asymptomatic”; this is part of the trend towards coronavirus as it spreads violently across a country where until recently very few of the 1.4 billion population were infected.

Also eliminating the requirement for positive cases to be quarantined at central facilities this month, the government is now battling a severe winter epidemic with estimated cases. reaching hundreds of millions and health services are under pressure.

Models predict the virus could lead to imminent 1 million deathsAlthough China’s public data has ceased to reflect the situation in the field, and other zero-Kovid rules such as batch testing have largely come to an end.

China followed a strict zero-COVID policy shortly after the pandemic first emerged, locking many of its largest cities for several years of policy, and imposing quarantine requirements on foreign arrivals as part of an attempt to eradicate the virus within its borders.

Later this year, policy began to unravel as authorities tried to contain outbreaks in multiple cities, including the capital, Beijing. Protesters took to the streets in November in a rare revolt against the central government’s approach, which soon relaxed considerably.

Monday’s announcement signals the end of the zero-Kovid system that has successfully limited the contagion of a virus that has changed China’s relationship with the outside world and ravaged all other advanced economies for long periods of time.

At one point this year, the quarantine arrival rule required travelers to spend three weeks in a hotel room. The current requirement of five days at the hotel and then three days at home will expire on January 8.

The sudden lifting of restrictions has already put a lot of pressure on China’s healthcare system. especially in BeijingBefore the policy was abandoned, it was thought to be one of the centers of the epidemic and one of the best prepared cities.

Recent economic data have highlighted the economic costs of the policy. Retail sales, an indicator of consumer spending, fell 5.9 percent year-on-year in November, beating analysts’ expectations, and the economy will miss its 5.5 percent annual growth target, already at a decades-low.

But analysts have also warned of the economic and institutional costs of the virus itself as it ravages the country. Apple is among the vulnerable for more supply chain issues.

Under COVID Zero, citizens in China were required to test at stands in major cities every few days and then scan a code on their phone to enter buildings. Such practices have largely disappeared as cases proliferated, but in late November, people in Shanghai were still placed in central quarantine as they were in close contact with positive cases in bars.

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