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Covid numbers are currently skyrocketing in Germany. Every day, the Robert Koch Institute announces new highs. In China, too, the incidence has risen in twenty provinces as a result of the latest outbreak – to 0.004. So it seems like the situation is currently under control. In their analysis, our Beijing author team notes that Xi Jinping’s decision-makers nevertheless do not play to deviate from the strict zero-covid strategy. Experts predict that a sudden drop of restriction would lead to a flare-up of the pandemic.
There is now virtually only one way out of sharp Corona measures: New medication that could treat the disease despite a spread of the pathogen. Chinese companies are therefore researching at full speed on an intravenous agent or anti-Covid pills. First test results already show promise.
It was a joke that almost got stuck in the throat of the head of JP Morgan. His humorous prediction that his bank would last longer than the equally old Communist Party caused great shock – both in China and among his investors. Ning Wang takes this anecdote as an opportunity to show how great the dependence of Wall Street banks on the goodwill of Beijing‘s leadership has become in the meantime. Stunningly, Beijing’s influence is increasing even further as a result of the liberalization of the Chinese market.
Covid medication as a way away from zero covid
With the rapid global spread of the new Omicron virus variant, China sees its strict zero-covid strategy confirmed. “If the Omicron variant launches a new wave of attack, it is China that will be best able to block its invasion,” state-run newspaper Global Times commented on Monday, almost sneeringly. China has become an “impregnable fortress” against the spread of the virus.
In fact, China has succeeded in keeping the infection largely at bay through strict measures (China.Table reported). Hotel quarantines of several weeks, which everyone who wants to enter the country has to endure, have proven to be particularly effective in preventing new variants. The readiness to send regions into lockdown on short notice also helps the authorities to keep the situation under control. Mass testing is another tool. In the most recent Covid wave, which has manifested itself in infections in more than 20 provinces since October, the number of new cases per day averaged less than 50 – an incidence of less than 0.004, in other words.
Mortality rate is decisive
Although criticism of such strict measures is also mounting in China (China.Table reported), it seems clear: China is not willing to change its approach as long as it would have to accept even remotely as many infections and deaths as is apparently considered acceptable in the West. In November, China’s top virologist, Zhong Nanshan said that China would only consider lifting restrictions at a mortality rate of 0.1 percent.