The city of Zhengzhou in China’s Henan Province has shut down one of its most populated districts and put almost 1 million residents under lockdown because of a flare-up of COVID-19.
Residents were asked to remain in their homes beginning on Oct. 17. Nonessential businesses have been shut down. The only instances in which people are allowed to leave their homes is when they need to undergo COVID-19 tests.
Zhengzhou is famous for being a hub for manufacturing iPhones. However, the manufacturing plants aren't located in the district subject to the lockdown.
COVID-19 restrictions are being imposed on other major Chinese cities as well. In the port city of Tianjin, one district is under lockdown. In the southern city of Guangzhou, schools have been shut down in one area.
In the financial hub of Shanghai, some schools have suspended in-person classes. Entertainment venues, such as cinemas and bars, have temporarily shut down in at least five districts. Some neighborhoods are also under lockdown. In certain areas, individual compounds have been barricaded with green fences.
Censorship, Economic ImpactsThe CCP has ramped up censorship online in a bid to stem the spread of frustration among the public, who are discontent with COVID-19 restrictions. In Beijing, two banners criticizing Chinese leader Xi Jinping and the regime’s COVID-19 policy were recently put up.
A group of economists surveyed by Bloomberg expects China's economy to only grow by 3.3 percent this year, which would be its second weakest growth rate in more than 40 years.
“His narrative is—China faces many dangers, the country is in a war-like state, figuratively, and he is the savior. With this narrative, he can get people to unite around him.”
Xi is anticipated to be elected to an unprecedented third term in office at the CCP’s 20th National Congress, which convened in Beijing on Oct. 16.