China’s Economy During Covid
The Chinese economy was seriously affected and greatly challenged by the COVID-19 epidemic, struck by the trade war with the United States . The economy also displayed strong vitality, as it has recovered rapidly from the regression, despite huge international uncertainty and volatility. Statistics from the China Statistical Bureau show that although China’s GDP decreased by 6.8 percent in the first quarter, and the first half-year GDP growth averaged 1.6 percent, but it soon recovered in the second quarter to an increase of 3.2 percent. These growth rates dramatically exceed the 1.2 percent projection of the IMF and are much better than the performance of many other countries.
Investment, consumption, and trade, respectively, contributed 58, 31, and 11 percent of China’s GDP growth last year. As the major impetus to economic growth, investment in traditional infrastructure has declined, but high-tech investment is on the rise, mainly focused on the medical manufacturing industry and e-commerce. This is largely encouraged by the policy of accelerating investment in new infrastructure projects, which authorities put in place to arrest the economic slowdown.
China: Daily Confirmed Deaths: How Do They Compare To Other Countries
This chart shows the daily confirmed deaths per million people of a countrys population.
Why adjust for the size of the population?
Differences in the population size between countries are often large, and the COVID-19 death count in more populous countries tends to be higher. Because of this it can be insightful to know how the number of confirmed deaths in a country compares to the number of people who live there, especially when comparing across countries.
For instance, if 1,000 people died in Iceland, out of a population of about 340,000, that would have a far bigger impact than the same number dying in the United States, with its population of 331 million. This difference in impact is clear when comparing deaths per million people of each countrys population in this example it would be roughly 3 deaths/million people in the US compared to a staggering 2,941 deaths/million people in Iceland.
China Demands Investigation Into Us Labs
On Wednesday, the Chinese embassy in Washington posted the calls for World Health Organization investigations at Fort Detrick and at the University of North Carolina to its website after it said U.S. media had rejected its editorial submissions.
And on Tuesday, China’s envoy to the United Nations asked the head of WHO for an investigation into U.S. labs.
A joint WHO-Chinese team visited the Wuhan Institute of Virology, but the United States said it had concerns about the access granted to the investigation.
“The early days of the pandemic were irrefutably in China, yet China continues to obfuscate and deny the international community the needed access,” a senior U.S. administration official said, adding that if a future pandemic were to originate in the United States, it would insist on a “swift and transparent” evaluation.
“If there were sound, technically credible reasons for a U.S. investigation, we would of course support it. But there are none,” said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity.
Republican Sen. Marco Rubio, who has argued a Chinese lab leak was plausible, in a statement urged the Biden administration to immediately declassify the report.
“The American people deserve to know what our government does and does not know about the origins of COVID-19,” Rubio said.
China Has Rejected A Who Plan For Further Investigation Into The Origins Of Covid
All flights from Nanjing have been canceled until Aug. 11, the Communist Party-controlled Global Times said earlier this week. It said the number of flights in and out of the city had been reduced since Monday.
China Reports Spike In New Covid Cases On Border With Myanmar
Surge at China border comes as UN warns that Myanmar could be at risk of becoming a super-spreader state.
China has reported its highest daily increase in new confirmed COVID-19 cases since January, driven by an outbreak in Yunnan province, which shares a border with Myanmar, where the coronavirus is surging due to the spread of the Delta variant.
Mainland China recorded 65 new confirmed cases for July 19, compared with 31 a day earlier, the National Health Commission said in a statement. That was the most since January 30, when 92 new cases were reported.
Imported infections accounted for most of the new cases, with Yunnan reporting 41 new cases originating from abroad, all of which involved Chinese nationals who had recently returned from Myanmar.
The current bout of cases in Yunnan started on July 4, and has been concentrated in Ruili and Longchuan, two small cities on Chinas border with Myanmar.
Ruili, battling its fourth outbreak since the pandemic started, reported seven new locally transmitted cases for July 19, while Longchuan had one.
Ruili is a key overland transit point for Yunnan, which has a 4,000-kilometre border with Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam.
The Yunnan outbreak marks the second cluster of infections in China involving the highly contagious Delta strain, following an outbreak in southern Guangdong province in May and June.
Which Countries Have Received Chinese Vaccines
Chinese firms have appeared keen to supply countries with plenty of doses of their vaccines, beyond those merely required to carry out clinical trials. For example, 223 million doses of Sinopharm jabs have already been distributed to various countries around the world. In some countries, the value of deals remains undisclosed but the New York Times reported that Hungary paid $36 per dose for the Sinopharm jab. In Senegal, a lower price was achievedjust $19 per dose in a deal supplying 200000 Sinopharm doses to the African country.
Some nations are relying heavily on Chinese vaccines for their covid-19 vaccination programmes. The majority of those administered by the UAE, for example, are made by Sinopharm. Serbia looks set to receive another 500000 Sinopharm doses, having already taken delivery of 1.5 million. Cambodia and Egypt have received shipments of 300000 doses at a time.
Meanwhile, countries trialling Sinovacs vaccine have received large numbers of doses already. Indonesia, for instance, has had 28 million doses at the time of writing. Chile has received five shipments according to Chinas state media although the exact number of doses is unclear.
Rollout of the CanSinoBIO vaccine has only just started, but Pakistan has ordered tens of millions of doses, according to its health minister. Mexico has ordered eight million doses of the same jab.
The Pandemic In Pictures
Chuck Laird, the man in the photo above, is tossing pizza dough in the air. What does that have to do with the pandemic?
If it werent for the coronavirus, Laird would be selling gasoline to customers of his Shell station in Point Roberts, Wash. But theres not much demand for fuel in the 4.8-square-mile town, which is surrounded by water on three sides and borders Canada on the fourth.
U.S. and Canadian officials closed the international border on March 21, 2020. American residents of tiny Point Roberts were suddenly stranded left without access to their doctors, schools and all kinds of services they once took for granted.
As the pandemic wore on, about 300 of Point Roberts residents decamped for the U.S. mainland, but 800 stayed behind, figuring the border was bound to reopen soon. So far, that hasnt happened.
Dont miss this tale by my colleague Richard Read about the Americans marooned on a virtual island.
Reactions To Government Response
The exodus from Wuhan before the lockdown resulted in angry responses on Sina Weibo from the residents in the other cities who are concerned that it could result in the spreading of the novel coronavirus to their cities. Some in Wuhan are concerned with the availability of provisions and especially medical supplies during the lockdown.
The World Health Organization called the Wuhan lockdown unprecedented and said that it showed how committed that the authorities are to contain a viral breakout. Later, the WHO clarified that the move was not a recommendation that it made and that the authorities had to wait and see how effective it was. The WHO separately stated that the possibility of locking an entire city down, as was in this case, was new to science.
The CSI 300 Index, an aggregate measure of the top 300 stocks in the and stock exchanges, dropped almost 3% on 23 January 2020, the biggest single-day loss in almost 9 months after the Wuhan lockdown was announced as the investors that are spooked by the drastic measure sought a safe haven for their investments.
Response from the science community
The journal reported at least 54 English-language papers about the new coronavirus in China were published by 30 January. Zuofeng Zhang, a public health expert from interviewed by the mainland China-based magazine Intellectual, asked why the published data were not used in epidemic control even before their publication.
Censorship And Police Responses
A pneumonia cluster of unknown cause was observed on 26 December and treated by the doctor Zhang Jixian in Hubei Provincial Hospital, who informed the Wuhan Jianghan CDC on 27 December. The early response by city authorities was accused of prioritising a control of information on the outbreak. A group of eight medical personnel, including Li Wenliang, an ophthalmologist from Wuhan Central Hospital, who in late December posted warnings on a new coronavirus strain akin to SARS, were warned by Wuhan police for “spreading rumours” for likening it to SARS.
Journalists in China have worked to publish information about the outbreak. The government initially allowed greater leeway than usual to reporters investigating the crisis, but then cracked down with greater censorship than usual. On 12 March, ten Tibetans were arrested for breaching control measures meant to prevent the spread of the virus. Dolma Kyab, a Tibetan writer and teacher, told Radio Free Asia that “the Chinese government is only using coronavirus as a convenient excuse to infringe on the human rights of Tibetans”.
The New York Times later reported that “authorities issued strict commands on the content and tone of news coverage, directed paid trolls to inundate social media with party-line blather and deployed security forces to muzzle unsanctioned voices.”
Response to whistleblowers
Death of Li Wenliang
China Warns It Will Retaliate Against ‘baseless’ Accusations Of Covid
We will continue to cooperate with international organizations like the WHO in their research and in their search for the origins, Fu Cong, director-general of the Foreign Ministrys Arms Control Department, said
Story at a glance
- China has reportedly threatened to take action against any nation that claims the novel coronavirus leaked from the Wuhan Institute of Virology.
- President Biden recently received an inconclusive intelligence report regarding the origins of COVID-19.
- China has repeatedly denied all allegations that the novel coronavirus originated in the Wuhan lab.
China has reportedly threatened to take action against any nation that claims the novel coronavirus leaked from the Wuhan Institute of Virology , after President Biden received an inconclusive report regarding the origins of COVID-19.
We will continue to cooperate with international organizations like the WHO in their research and in their search for the origins, Fu Cong, director-general of the Foreign Ministrys Arms Control Department, said, according to Bloomberg News.
But we do not accept baseless and unfounded accusations that are politically motivated. And if they want to baselessly accuse China, so they better be prepared to accept the counterattack from China, he continued.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT CORONAVIRUS RIGHT NOW
How Vaccine Misinformation Is Scaring Us To Death
If you hear the name QAnon, you might think of the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol, or perhaps . If COVID-19 vaccines arent on your list already, you should add them.
More and more, adherents of the QAnon conspiracy theory are embracing and spreading false claims about the lifesaving vaccines: They cause infertility. Theyre made with aborted fetuses. Bill Gates is using the vaccine to depopulate the world.
Here in California, these fictions are making the rounds through the world of health and wellness, my colleague Laura Nelson reports. QAnon and New Age spiritualism may seem like an unlikely pairing one is toxic, the other seeks to cleanse but dig a little deeper, and youll see they have a lot in common.
The community of yogis, energy healers, sound bathers, crystal practitioners, psychics and quantum magicians is uniquely primed to accept a conspiratorial worldview. Its already awash in magical thinking, dietary supplements backed by psuedoscientific claims and a deep skepticism of mainstream medicine.
That includes vaccines.
Its always been the water we were swimming in, said Julian Walker, a yogi in Mar Vista who tracks the marriage of conspiracy theories and spiritualism. Now were seeing what happens when the water rises.
This is how QAnon roped in at least a dozen people in Kathleen Abrahams spiritual social circle, including two of her closest friends.
Reallocation Of Medical Resources And Covid
The second huge challenge, in addition to the large population and population mobility around the Chinese New Year, was that the country had an insufficient amount of medical resources. According to the WHO’s World Health Statistics 2019, in China, the number of doctors per 10,000 people is 17.9, which is only slightly higher than the global average . This figure is significantly lower than that of many developed countries, and also lower than that in many developing countries. Furthermore, the number of nurses and midwives per 10,000 people in China is only 23.1, which is far lower than the global average of 34.8. According to a survey report on the survival status of Chinese doctors, more than 50 percent of the doctors who were surveyed said that they worked more than 60 hours a week on average, and nearly 25 percent of them worked more than 80 hours a week on average. As a consequence, doctors are generally overworked.
China Orders Mass Testing In Wuhan As Covid Outbreak Spreads
A medical worker takes swab samples from a chid during mass testing for COVID-19 at a residential block in Wuhan in central China’s Hubei province Tuesday, Aug. 3, 2021. China suspended flights and trains, canceled professional basketball league games and announced mass coronavirus testing in Wuhan on Tuesday as widening outbreaks of the delta variant reached the city where the disease was first detected in late 2019.
BEIJING China suspended flights and trains, canceled professional basketball league games and announced mass coronavirus testing in Wuhan, as widening outbreaks of the delta variant reached the city where the disease was first detected in late 2019.
While the total number of cases is still in the hundreds, they are far more widespread than anything China has dealt with since the initial outbreak that devastated Wuhan in early 2020, and over time spread to the rest of the country and the world.
China has not eliminated but largely curbed COVID-19 at home with quick lockdowns and mass testing to isolate infected people whenever new cases pop up. Most previous outbreaks didnt spread far beyond a city or province. This time, cases have been confirmed in more than 35 cities in 17 of mainland Chinas 31 provinces and regions.
Wuhan, a provincial capital of 11 million people in central China, is the latest city to undergo city-wide testing. Three cases were confirmed there on Monday, its first non-imported cases in more than a year.
China Shuts Down Transport Routes As It Battles Worst Covid Outbreak In Months
Every province has advised residents not to leave as flights are cancelled and Beijing suspends more than a dozen rail lines
China has dramatically tightened travel restrictions as it seeks to control the countrys worst outbreak in months, with hundreds of Delta variant cases linked to airport employees.
The latest outbreak has so far infected more than 400 people in 25 cities, including the capital city, Beijing, and in Wuhan for the first time since it contained the initial Covid-19 outbreak last year. Cases have been reported in 17 of the 31 provinces.
A further 71 locally transmitted cases were confirmed on Tuesday, the national health commission said on Wednesday the highest daily count since January. Nearly half were in Jiangsu, the site of the airport cluster to which most cases have been linked, and 15 in Hunan.
On Wednesday afternoon China announced it would tighten cross-border movement, and temporarily suspend issuing entry and exit documents for non-essential, non-emergency travel, state media reported.
The governments of all 31 provinces have advised residents to avoid leaving their regions unless necessary, and to stay away from the four high-risk and more than 120 medium-risk regions across China, in an attempt to curb further transmission of the highly infectious Delta variant.
How Are The Vaccines Being Deployed In China
All five of the leading domestic candidates can be used in China, though its unclear how many doses of each have been administered so far, or where. No other vaccines have been approved for use in China.
The country had administered around 120 million doses as of 31 March, according to data published by the National Health Commission and reported by Reuters. Zhong Nanshan, a former president of the Chinese Medical Association, told the news agency in early March that China is aiming to vaccinate 40% of its 1.4 billion population by the end of July. The country is prioritising 18 to 59 year olds in key worker groups, such as healthcare workers, before moving on to clinically vulnerable people and then those who are aged 60 or over.
Because of the lack of transparency surrounding Chinese made vaccines, however, vaccine hesitancy appears to be a problem. A survey by Chinas disease control and prevention centre found that just 42% of healthcare and epidemic preparedness workers were willing to have a vaccine during a recent rollout. There are reports of similar hesitancy in Brazil; in a recent poll in the country, just 47% of respondents said they would be willing to take a vaccine made in China.
The Virus Is Winning: Chinas Rebuff Of Whos New Covid Probe Alarms Experts
The experts say a complete probe inside China is necessary to pinpoint the origins of the virus, which has had a devastating toll around the world.
Security personnel gather near the entrance of the Wuhan Institute of Virology during a visit by the World Health Organization team in Wuhan on Feb. 3. |
07/25/2021 06:50 AM EDT
Leading U.S. infectious disease experts are warning that China’s rejection of a World Health Organization plan for another Covid-19 investigation inside the country threatens to deny the world critical data needed to identify and head off future pandemics.
And experts told POLITICO that the denial of access to Wuhan, the original epicenter of the virus outbreak, deepens growing suspicion the Chinese government is attempting to cover up the possibility that the virus was intentionally engineered.
We have had already two coronavirus pandemics come out of China and its more likely than not that we will have another coronavirus pandemic come out of China, so is our best chance to get our hands around how this gets out of bats and into humans, said Peter Hotez, dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston. We cant do this without going to China. There is no way you can get to the bottom of this from 5000 miles away.
Zeng Yixin, Chinas vice minister of the National Health Commission, rejected the plan, saying it disregards common sense and defies science.
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Just Before The Release Of A Us Intelligence Community Report Of Covid
Just before the release of a US intelligence community report of COVID-19, China criticised the politicisation by the US in efforts to trace the virus origin and demanded a US military laboratory be investigated. According to Al Jazeera, the US report is intended to resolve disputes among intelligence agencies considering different theories about how the Coronavirus has emerged, including a once-dismissed theory about a Chinese laboratory accident. It was due to be completed by a Tuesday deadline but it would take a few more days to prepare an unclassified version, the White House said earlier this week.
Meanwhile, Fu Cong, the director-general of the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs arms control department, told a news briefing on Wednesday, Scapegoating China cannot whitewash the US.
It is only fair that if the US insists that this is a valid hypothesis, they should do their turn and invite the investigation into their labs, Fu added.
It is worth noting that China has repeatedly said that a laboratory leak was highly unlikely. It has even been ridiculed as a theory that Coronavirus escaped from a lab in the city of Wuhan, where COVID-19 infection emerged in late 2019, setting off the pandemic. China has instead suggested that the virus slipped out of a lab in Fort Detrick, Maryland, US, in 2019.
Biden Given Inconclusive Intelligence Report: Post
Meanwhile, US media reports said a classified US intelligence report delivered to the White House on Tuesday was inconclusive on the origins of the pandemic, in part due to a lack of information from China.
The assessment, ordered by US President Joe Biden 90 days ago, was unable to definitively conclude whether the virus that first emerged in central China had jumped to humans via animals or escaped a highly secure research facility in Wuhan, two US officials familiar with the matter told the Washington Post.
Despite Bidens directive that the intelligence community redouble their efforts to untangle the origin debate, the 90-day review brought them no closer to consensus, the officials told the Post.
Former US President Donald Trump and his aides had helped fuel the lab-leak theory, using it to deflect blame for their administrations handling of the worlds biggest outbreak, and instead finger point at Beijing, which strongly denies the hypothesis.
Max The Vax: Thailand Develops Robotic Arm To Extract Covid Doses
China is threatening to retaliate against any country that claims the coronavirus originated from a Wuhan lab leak a warning that comes as a US intelligence community report was about the origins of the pandemic.
We will continue to cooperate with international organizations like the WHO in their research and in their search for the origins, said Fu Cong, director-general of the Foreign Ministrys Arms Control Department, according to Bloomberg News.
But we do not accept baseless and unfounded accusations that are politically motivated. And if they want to baselessly accuse China, so they better be prepared to accept the counterattack from China, he said on Wednesday.
The 90-day review President Biden ordered US intelligence agencies to conduct in May concluded on Tuesday, and an unclassified report may be released to the public as soon as next week, the White House said.
The classified version delivered to the president was inconclusive on whether COVID-19 was transmitted by animals or escaped from the Wuhan Institute of Virology because China refused to cooperate, according to a report in the Washington Post.
China has denied that the deadly virus that has killed more than 4 million people around the globe originated at the Wuhan lab and has even pushed the conspiracy theory that coronavirus leaked from Fort Detrick in Maryland, which conducts biological weapons research.
Covid Has Trickled Back Into China Beijing Is Responding With A Tsunami Of Containment Measures
Hong Kong China is now facing its worst outbreak of since the early days of the global pandemic, reporting 71 new locally transmitted cases on Wednesday. While that’s a relatively small number compared to the soaring number of cases in the United States, it’s the country’s highest tally since January, and the government is responding aggressively.
The officially reported numbers are also small relative to China’s population nearly 500 among its population of 1.4 billion people since July 20th but the reach of the resurgence is wide. Hotspots have flared up in more than 30 cities across at least 18 provinces. New daily infections have risen every day for nearly the past week.
“We cannot relax,” said China’s leading respiratory disease expert, Zhong Nanshan, over the weekend. “We must pay attention to the control measures and establish herd immunity.”