China shuts border till mid-2022 over Covid-19, variant concerns

This photo taken on 28 April 2021 shows university students queueing to receive the China National Biotec Group (CNBG) Covid-19 coronavirus vaccine at a university in Wuhan, in China's central Hubei province.

This photo taken on 28 April 2021 shows university students queueing to receive the China National Biotec Group (CNBG) Covid-19 coronavirus vaccine at a university in Wuhan, in China's central Hubei province. File photo/AFP/Getty Images

Hindustan Times

NEW DELHI, India, 22 June 2021

In a bid to keep the new variants of coronavirus out of the nation, China is planning to extend its pandemic border restrictions for at least another year, according to a report by the Wall Street Journal on Tuesday. Another reason for China to keep its border is a calendar of sensitive events, Reuters reported, citing officials.

China will open the borders in the second half of 2022, a provisional timeline of which was set during a cabinet meeting last month, the WSJ reported, citing an official.

The development of curbing international travel in China comes as several nations have raised their guard against the highly transmissible Delta variant, which has been dubbed as the fourth variant of concern.

On Tuesday, China reported 25 new confirmed Covid-19 cases in the mainland for 21 June, up from 17 infections a day earlier, the health officials said.

While two cases were reported to be local infections in southern Guangdong province, the rest were imported cases, the National Health Commission said.

The number of new asymptomatic infections rose to 27 from 19 a day earlier. China does not classify them as confirmed cases.

According to John Hopkins, China has seen a total of 103,578 confirmed Covid-19 cases in the mainland by the end of 21 June, with the death toll unchanged at 4,846.


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