A senior official at China’s National Health Commission has warned the country’s citizens against long-distance travel during the holiday period encompassing May 1′s Labour Day, citing countermeasures against transmission of Covid-19.
Wu Liangyou, deputy director of the Commission’s Bureau of Disease Prevention and Control, said in Thursday comments, that the country’s local-level authorities should promote to the public the idea of either “travelling locally”, or confining journeys to “peripheral areas” relative to their home, during the Labour Day break.
The holiday season for mainland China residents is due to start on April 30, a Saturday, and run until May 4, a Wednesday.
The health authorities in Zhuhai – the gateway city in the mainland province of Guangdong, for inbound travel to Macau by land – said on Thursday that they would advise their residents to stay in the city during the Labour Day break, and avoid unnecessary ‘cross-province’ journeys.
To date, mainland China remains the only place to have a largely-quarantine free travel arrangement with Macau.
Mr Wu’s comments on limiting travel were during a press conference by China’s State Council, on the latest Covid-19 situation across the country. The mainland has seen recently a number of large-scale outbreaks reported in major population centres, including Shanghai.
He said China would in likelihood continue to face the risk of local Covid-19 outbreaks, and potential domestic transmission of the virus between regions. That could pose challenges for the country’s Covid-19 control effort.
A number of jurisdictions in the Asia Pacific region has moved to a ‘living with Covid’ strategy after achieving a high vaccination rate against the disease among their populations. China has preferred a policy of Covid-19 containment and eradication.
As of Thursday, mainland China had reported 15,500 fresh Covid-19 cases: a majority in Shanghai. Macau’s neighbouring mainland province, Guangdong, reported 14 new local Covid-19 cases as of Thursday: all within the provincial capital, Guangzhou.
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