China: Covid outbreak leaves foreign investors in limbo


China is now at a critical point if it wants to defend its position as the world’s major supplier of various materials…reports Asian Lite News

Fresh Covid outbreak has further hampered China’s supply chain, leaving foreign investors worried and weakening the country’s competitiveness, the media reported on Wednesday.

China is now at a critical point if it wants to defend its position as the world’s major supplier of various materials, according to The South China Morning Post.

“China is racing against time to stabilise its workforce and domestic production, as widespread Covid-19 infections test the country’s capability to fulfil overseas orders and threaten its status as the world’s pre-eminent manufacturing hub,” the report mentioned.

The country is now planning to reopen borders on January 8 and abandon quarantine after it downgrades its treatment of Covid-19.

Strict control measures including compulsory quarantine for travellers coming to China will also be removed after the downgrade.

Workers in protective suits stand at an entrance to a university’s residential area under lockdown following the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak in Xian, Shaanxi province, China December 20, 2021. Picture taken December 20, 2021. China Daily via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS – THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. CHINA OUT. – RC28IR9DTSQW

According to the report, the country’s chaotic reopening comes amid falling overseas orders and forecasts of global recession next year.

“Major Western economies are also encouraging reshoring or near-shoring to ensure supply chain security,” it added.

Local authorities have stopped publishing official estimates of Covid-19 infections or the impact on supply chains.

Some coastal authorities in provinces like Guangdong are “scrambling to keep as many workers as possible to fulfil overseas orders”.

Many industries have reported lower output, partly because of the infections but also because of the slower winter season.

Automaker BYD said last week that its December output will decrease by about 8 per cent.

ALSO READ: China ends release of daily Covid statistics

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