China Covid Surge: Here Are The Latest Updates
China's Covid crisis is also hammering country's economy, with the World Bank cutting its growth projections from 6.3 per cent to 2.7 per cent for 2022- 23.
In what is a massive failure of planning and implementation, China is now facing one of the largest Covid crisis since the beginning of the pandemic.
China began easing its short-sighted "Zero Covid" regime two weeks ago following massive protests across the country as people grew frustrated with strict lockdowns and testing.
The virus is now sweeping through the country of 1.4 billion people who lack natural immunity having been shielded for so long. The 'superwave' of infections has left cities and hospitals scrambling for resources while leaving crematoriums overburdened.
Experts say at least 60 per cent of China and 10 per cent of world's population is likely to be infected over the next month and a half.
Where China failed?
The stringent lockdowns had resulted in one of the lowest growth rates registered by China in three decades.
However, the elections to the premiership of the Chinese Communist Party were to be held in October, which had prevented President Xi Jinping from lifting lockdowns and keeping the infections low.
Experts have also said that the country had spent big on quarantine and testing facilities over the past three years rather than bolstering hospitals and clinics and training medical staff.
The effectiveness of China's homemade vaccine Sinovac and its refusal to administer Western-made m-RNA vaccines is also being questioned.
What's happening now?
According to a recent report by Voices Against Autocracy, Chinese citizens have been left to fend for themselves after the Communist Party suddenly lifted its stringent Covid regulations.
However, the Chinese government continues to downplay the severity of the situation, with the National Health Commission reporting total deaths at 5,241.
Reportedly, crematoriums are being guarded by the police, in a country which has reported only a small number of deaths in the last six months.
The government also says that only Covid-19 deaths from 'respiratory failures' will be counted in the official toll, while the rest of the world counts deaths of all those who have Covid infections, irrespective of the cause of death.
China's overall vaccination stands at above 90 per cent as of now, but the rate for adults with booster shots is low at 57.9 per cent, according to government data.
Governments and institutions across the world are taking notice of these developments. The Indian government has issued a fresh Covid advisory after a high level meeting held by Prime Minister Narendra Modi yesterday (22 December).
Notably, the Omicron BF.7 variant spreading across China right now, had been found in 91 nations for two years prior to this.
As per the data, about 91 nations have had a variant matching the genetic make-up and mutation profile of BF.7 variant circulating since February 2021.
The virus is also hammering China's economy, with the World Bank cutting its growth projections from 6.3 per cent to 2.7 per cent for 2022- 23.
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