Is China headling for another COVID lockdown?

The world appears to have gone back to normal yet China could be hitting pause once again. COVID-19 appears to be far from over and China could be headed for another lockdown. Over two years after the first worldwide lockdown, it appears China still hasn’t recovered from the global pandemic. But have we? Each time a new variant pops up with a worse name than the other, and worse symptoms also. 

However, China is an important country to have as a reference globally when it comes to COVID-19 due to the fact that it all started there. While several of us finally went back to work or school physically and masks are no longer a requirement around the world, in  China, things have gone quite differently. Till April 2022 Shanghai reported up to 10,000 new COVID-19 cases daily.

During that time, authorities in Beijing launched mass testing, closed schools, and imposed selective lockdowns in some residential buildings in a bid to curb infections. Nearly all of its 25 million residents were locked in their homes or neighborhoods. After more than two years of dealing with these measurements, protests & indignation came. How is China’s current lockdown situation? Here’s everything you need to know.

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China vs. COVID-19

China has faced the brunt of the global pandemic COVID-19. The world was at a standstill following millions of cases and many deaths. Entry restrictions quickly came into place in China and since early 2020 China had its borders closed. However, this will change next January 8th due to government decisions, nevertheless, everything indicates that it is a bad idea. 

All 2022 Shanghai & Beijing kept their “zero COVID” strategy, which China has used throughout the pandemic to curb cases. However, it was called into question due to the omicron variant and its high contagion capacity. It’s impressive how Shanghai’s lockdown has been characterized as being chaotic & dysfunctional. There are complaints about food shortages and lack of medical services despite the highly stringent measures.

The COVID-19 situation in China has never stopped being alarming, not only due to the sanitary conditions but to the way it has been managed politically. According to the Chinese government yesterday, there was only one death as a result of the virus. Yet,  citizens show the real situation in hospitals & morgues through social networks, this content involves corpses piled up on the ground.

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China was the only big country that still asked for an obligatory lockdown for its foreign visitors. Although this could paralyze its tourism, China is definitely not ready to put an end to the mandatory quarantine to enter the country. According to virologist Estanislao Nistal, these trips can cause the virus to come out, jump and travel between people, leading to a global increase in the number of cases.

Another lockdown?

Is our worst nightmare from 2020 coming back in 2023? When are we going to finally stop having flashbacks from Vietnam when it comes to lockdown? Several economic experts are expecting a global recession next 2023.  China’s latest governmental decision has raised fears of another global lockdown in 2023. While the quarantine allowed several positive situations, definitely no one wants to go back there ever.

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Although China might not be taking the best decision, it will be irresponsible, uncritical, and reductionist to blame & conspire over one single country. Let’s be careful with all the political discourses hiding behind COVID-19, all the polemic around vaccines is a great example.

China will eliminate 2023 quarantines and restrictive measures against COVID-19 for those arriving from other countries. Nonetheless, it has been one of the few countries that have demanded the longest and most strict lockdowns. In this case, people traveling to China are the ones that should have more conscious about the sanitary measures they take before, during, and after their trip. 

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