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China should take more effective COVID-19 measures, minimise economic, social impact: Xi

China should take more effective COVID-19 measures, minimise economic, social impact: Xi

FILE PHOTO: Chinese President Xi Jinping applauds during the closing session of the National People's Congress (NPC) at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China on Mar 11, 2022. (Photo: REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins)

BEIJING: Chinese President Xi Jinping has urged the country to take more effective COVID-19 measures and minimise the impact of the epidemic on economic development, state television said on Thursday (Mar 17), as the country battles a new wave of infections.

China is fighting its biggest wave of locally transmitted COVID-19 cases since it contained the initial outbreak centred on Wuhan in 2020.

Even as much of the world has relaxed or ended coronavirus restrictions, millions of people in northeastern China are under lockdown and authorities have imposed restrictions on business activities and cargo transport in major cities such as Shenzhen.

More than two dozen regions have reported infections in the past few weeks, despite a tiny caseload by global standards, putting pressure on China's "dynamic-clearance" policy that aims to curb flare-ups quickly as they arise.

China should curb the momentum of the virus spread as soon as possible while sticking to the "dynamic-clearance" policy, Xi told a meeting of the Politburo, the ruling Communist Party's top decision-making body.

Officials in areas with serious outbreaks should treat COVID-19 control work as their top priority, and those whose dereliction of duty caused the outbreak to get out of control must be held accountable, state television reported, citing the Politburo meeting.

Source: Reuters/ga

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