Firms are struggling to re-open factories in Shanghai

Shanghai officials today said the covid outbreak was under ‘effective control’ on Friday and that cases have been on a ‘continuous downward trend’ since April 22.

The city has been under lockdown since April 1 and there’s no visibility to when that will end. About 2.3m people are in sealed-off areas while 16.7m are in lower-risk ‘prevention zones’ but how those rules are applied are a point of frustration for residents.

The latest number of cases was 4024 yesterday but the vast majority of those were in quarantine centers. There were 245 locally transmitted cases reported on Saturday.

A survey of Japanese manufacturers on Thursday showed how difficult it is to re-open factories under ‘closed loop’ rules. According to the SCMP:

The Shanghai Japanese Commerce & Industry Club said on Thursday of 54 firms that responded to a survey it conducted between April 27-30, 63 per cent responded that their factories had yet to resume operations.

Out of the 37 per cent that have resumed operations, over three-quarters said production was at or below 30 per cent of normal levels.

That’s a bit dated now but underscores how difficult it will be to reestablish supply chains.

Meanwhile, the centre of the outbreak appears to be moving to Beijing where the Chaoyang district ordered another round of mass testing along with a stop to construction work and office closures. On Saturday, 78 cases were reported compared to 68 a day earlier.

Here’s a great chart from Exante showing what looks like a de facto lockdown in Beijing:

Beijing subway usage
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