China should take more effective COVID measures, minimize economic and social impact -Xi

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 March 11, 2022. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins

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BEIJING, March 17 (Reuters) – Chinese President Xi Jinping has urged the country to take more effective measures against COVID-19 and minimize the epidemic’s impact on economic development, state television said on Thursday. state, as the country battles a new wave of infections. .

China is battling its biggest wave of locally transmitted COVID cases since containing the initial outbreak centered in Wuhan in 2020. Even as much of the world has eased or ended coronavirus restrictions, millions people in northeast China are under control and authorities have imposed restrictions. on commercial activities and the transport of goods in major cities such as Shenzhen.

More than two dozen regions have reported infections in recent weeks, despite a tiny number of cases by global standards, putting pressure on China’s “dynamic clearance” policy that aims to curb outbreaks quickly when they arise.

China should curb the spread of the virus as soon as possible while sticking to the policy of “dynamic depollution”, Xi told a meeting of the Politburo, the ruling Communist Party’s top decision-making body.

Officials in areas with severe outbreaks should consider COVID control work their top priority, and those whose dereliction of duty has driven the outbreak out of control must be held accountable, state television reported, citing the Politburo meeting.

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Reporting by Roxanne Liu and Ryan Woo Editing by Raissa Kasolowsky and Frances Kerry

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