China seems to be aiming for an easing of the strict corona measures. The deputy prime minister responsible for fighting the corona virus says the virus is making fewer people ill.
“We are entering a new phase with new prevention and control tasks as the omikron variant causes less disease, more people have been vaccinated and experience in containing the virus has grown,” Deputy Prime Minister Sun told state media. . He also calls for an “optimization” of the treatment of corona patients and the test and quarantine policy.
According to the Reuters news agency, it will be announced in the coming days that there will be fewer mass tests and that people who have been infected and their relatives will be able to self-isolate at home under certain conditions. Under current policy, infected people and their close contacts have to go to a central government quarantine facility.
The claim that the virus is weakening is new to the Chinese government and departs from the government’s position to date. The words follow a week of unusually fierce protests for China against very strict lockdown measures. This meant, among other things, that apartment complexes were sometimes closed for weeks if even one resident tested positive.
Some cities have already eased even as infection rates are high. Temporary lockdowns were lifted on Tuesday in some districts of the southern industrial city of Guangzhou. Schools, restaurants and cinemas can reopen in a neighborhood.