It has happened again. A huge metropolis in China has been shut down because of a number of covid cases that would hardly raise an eyebrow in an American city.
The southern city of Chengdu reported 157 new cases Wednesday and more than 700 over the past week. In most cities outside China, 700 cases wouldn’t be classified as an outbreak, let alone in a metropolis of 21 million people. But China is different, as we have seen so many times over the past two years, and this week those 21 million people were put on lockdown. Effective at 6 p.m. Thursday, these were the rules in Chengdu: You can leave your house for mandated covid tests; each household can send one person (with a negative test) out for groceries once per day; otherwise special permissions would be required to leave home. As of today, only supermarkets, pharmacies and hospitals are allowed to open.
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- Hungry and scared: Inside Shanghai’s disastrous zero-covid lockdown
- Shanghai’s covid lockdown is over. Its economic problems aren’t.
- China Scientist: New Covid Wave Could Bring 65 Million Weekly Cases
These photos are divided between the pre-lockdown mad rush to stores and food markets — and then the all-too-familiar scenes of a major city gone quiet. It’s hard for the rest of the world to imagine; in China, it’s all too easy.
And so once again — as was the case for the two-month lockdown in Shanghai cities, zero-covid will bring economic pain, at a time when — as Grid has reported — China faces economic headwinds on multiple fronts.
Officials in Chengdu gave no indication of how long the lockdown might last.
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