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Shanghai likely to gradually lift lockdowns 'by end of May'
Published on: 2022-05-06
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After over a month of decisive and tough battle against Omicron, Shanghai has been recording declining numbers of new infections at the community level in recent days. The city reported 34 new infections at the community level on Wednesday - the lowest since May 1 - and its daily new case tally continued declining below 5,000, data showed on Thursday. With thousands of key enterprises resuming production, experts forecast that the city will gradually lift the lockdowns by the end of May.

New COVID-19 cases recorded on Wednesday dropped 8 percent from the number on Tuesday, and 34 cases were found outside collective quarantine places. The number of infections found at the community level was also the lowest since May 1 - the day after Shanghai announced that it had cleared all the infections at the community level from April 29 to 30.

The city has continued to conduct citywide nucleic acid and antigen tests for residents during recent days. As of Wednesday, more than 2.3 million residents were put under lockdown involving 11,893 residential communities, while 16.47 million residents were in precaution-level regions, according to local authorities.

For some residents under precaution-level regions where no positive cases have been found for 14 days, one person from a household is allowed to go out to purchase daily necessities within certain areas. In order to avoid large gatherings, some communities strengthened preventive measures.

Local authorities in Shanghai believed that the anti-epidemic measures apparently took effect, as the number of residents in zones under lockdown has been gradually dropping. Meanwhile, more enterprises resumed production, as among over 1,800 key companies, over 70 percent resumed production covering industries such as vehicles, integrated circuits and biomedicine.

The local bus operators are also working on coordinating and deploying personnel, overhauling vehicles and strengthening epidemic prevention and control measures, as part of preparations for the resumption of daily traffic.

A model developed by Yao Maosheng, a professor at the College of Environmental Sciences and Engineering at Peking University, showed that by the end of May, the current infection wave in Shanghai is likely to be contained, and the city will gradually lift the lockdowns by then.

Yao also predicted that new infections will drop below 1,000 around May 19, and the total infection tally could reach 620,000 to 630,000.

Some other experts also agreed that given the declining daily new infections, the outbreak in Shanghai could be fully controlled by the end of May.

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