Chinese authorities imposed lockdowns on 600,000 people in the area surrounding the world’s largest iPhone factory on Wednesday after workers fled to avoid a coronavirus outbreak and the resulting restrictions.
All people except Covid-prevention volunteers and essential workers “must not leave their residences except to receive Covid tests and emergency medical treatment”, officials from central China’s Zhengzhou Airport Economy Zone said.
The move comes after images emerged on Chinese social media last week showing people breaking out of the facility, which is run by Taiwanese tech giant Foxconn and makes products for Apple.
China is the last major economy committed to a zero-Covid strategy, persisting with snap lockdowns, mass testing and lengthy quarantines in a bid to stamp out emerging outbreaks.
But new variants have tested local officials’ ability to snuff out flare-ups faster than they can spread, causing much of the country to live under an ever-changing mosaic of Covid curbs.
The district in Zhengzhou city said Wednesday that all businesses would be required to work from home, with only “key enterprises” allowed to continue operating. It did not specify which businesses fell under that category.
Only medical vehicles and those delivering essentials are allowed on the streets.
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