(Corrects in paragraph 15 to say that the air show in Zhuhai is biannual, not annual)
SHANGHAI (Reuters) – The resurgence of COVID-19 in China has prompted authorities and companies, including key iPhone maker Foxconn, to step up measures to contain outbreaks, halting production and throwing confusion at trade events.
China on Monday reported 5,496 new locally transmitted COVID-19 cases for Nov. 6, the highest since May 2, when the country’s commercial capital Shanghai was placed under a crushing lockdown amid its worst outbreak.
Since October, disruptions in the world’s second-largest economy have accelerated across the country, from the central province of Henan to Guangdong in the south, as Omicron infections spread.
Taiwan-based Foxconn said late Sunday that it would implement new COVID-19 measures at its plant in Zhengzhou, including putting in place a system that would involve moving all working employees to three bedrooms.
Zhengzhou, the provincial capital of Henan, reported 297 new local COVID-19 cases for Nov. 6, the highest in five days, as the city of nearly 13 million people struggled to contain its worst outbreak in months while maintaining its economy in balance. .
Foxconn, whose production of Apple Inc’s iPhone 14 models at its Zhenghou plant has been affected due to its restrictions, said in a statement on its Zhengzhou plant’s WeChat account that employees will have to follow a “point-to-point” system. “. where they can only move between their bedroom and the factory area.
Another eight bedrooms will only allow workers in, not out.
The restrictions were implemented at the request of the government, he said.
Foxconn has been working to retain staff and ease tensions at the factory, after workers complained about its treatment and provisions under COVID-19 prevention measures. Many employees had fled the factory, prompting Foxconn to offer generous bonuses to retain staff.
While several events in China have been canceled or postponed amid rising cases, some organizers continued to push.
Some visitors to the China International Import Expo (CIIE) currently taking place in Shanghai have been barred from entering the event despite not having left the city in the past two weeks and meeting all clearance requirements. Health.
One found out she couldn’t go alone at the entrance when the lights flashed red and security guards said her records showed travel history issues.
A senior bank executive who was planning to attend the trade show on Sunday found he was unable to do so because he had worked in his office on a day the previous week where there had been a case of close contact, the banker told Reuters.
At the biannual Zhuhai Air Show in Guangdong, which is due to start on Tuesday, an aviation executive told Reuters he was barred from entering despite arriving three days early to meet the requirements, as he had been in a district of Beijing. that had reported cases in the last seven days.
Chinese stocks surged last week for their biggest weekly gain in more than two years as investors poured $1 trillion into the market in hopes of a reopening in the world’s second-largest economy.
But China’s health authorities dispelled that speculation on Saturday by reiterating that they would persevere in their approach to eliminate COVID-19 cases as soon as they emerge. However, authorities have been making continuous, albeit modest, adjustments to control the virus.
Stocks in China were tentative on Monday and rose in Hong Kong in early trading.
(Reporting by Brenda Goh, Ryan Woo, Winni Zhou, Sophie Yu, and Engen Tham; Editing by Christopher Cushing)