Shanghai to end 2-month COVID-19 lockdown

BEIJING (AP) – Shanghai authorities said they would take some major steps Wednesday after a two-month COVID-19 lockdown constrained the national economy and largely kept millions of people at home to reopen China’s largest city.

Full bus and subway services will be restored, as well as basic rail connections to the rest of China, Deputy Mayor Zong Ming said at a daily news conference on the city’s outbreak on Tuesday.

Schools will partially reopen on a student voluntary basis, and shopping malls, supermarkets, convenience stores and pharmacies will continue to reopen gradually, up to 75% of their total capacity. Cinemas and gyms will remain closed.

officials, who Make June 1st the target date With a view to reopening in early May, the pace of gradual relaxation in recent days appears poised to accelerate. Some malls and markets have reopened, and some residents have been given passes that allow them to go out for a few hours at a time. In at least some chat groups, Tuesday’s cynicism about the slow pace and stop-and-go nature of opening gave way to excitement about the prospect of opening. able to move freely Entering the city for the first time since the end of March.

Shanghai recorded 29 new cases on Monday, continuing a steady decline from more than 20,000 a day in April. Li Qiang, the top official in Shanghai, China’s ruling Communist Party, was quoted at a meeting on Monday as saying that Shanghai has made significant achievements in fighting the epidemic through continuous struggle.

Success has a price. Authorities have imposed suffocating lockdowns across the city under China’s “Zero Virus” strategy, which aims to contain any outbreaks through mass testing and centralized facilities to isolate anyone infected.

Schools will reopen for the final two years of high school and the third year of middle school, but students can decide whether to attend school in person. Other grades and kindergartens remain closed.

On Tuesday, the Chinese capital Beijing further eased restrictions in some areas. The city has imposed limited lockdowns, but not citywide levels, and the outbreak, which is much smaller, appears to be waning. Beijing recorded 18 new cases on Monday.

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