The new crown epidemic has been fermenting for more than two years, and many countries have returned to normal life, but China still maintains a strict zero-clearing policy. Recently, the new crown epidemic broke out in Hainan, China, and the tourist city of Sanya has implemented global static management since the early morning of Saturday (August 6).
Global static management
According to Sanya’s official notification, from 6:00 a.m. on August 6, 2022, the city will implement temporary global static management. In addition to ensuring basic social operation services, epidemic prevention and control, and emergency special circumstances, the city-wide restrictions on the movement of people and the suspension of urban public transportation.
On Sunday (August 7), Sanya added 186 confirmed cases and 227 asymptomatic infections. From 0:00 on August 1 to 24:00 on August 7, a total of 801 confirmed cases and 409 asymptomatic infections were found in the city.
Hainan Province requires that those who are currently in Sanya, or those who have traveled to Sanya since July 23, should not leave the island for the time being. Nucleic acid testing should be conducted according to regional epidemic prevention and control requirements. Subsequent arrangements will be determined based on the situation of Sanya epidemic prevention and control; local residents of Hainan are not necessary or unnecessary. outlying islands.
Hainan Sanya New Crown Epidemic Prevention and Control Work Headquarters stated at a press conference on Saturday that it will provide half-price discounted renewal services for tourists stranded in hotels. Tourists can leave the island after completing a 7-day risk investigation (5 nucleic acid tests are negative). .
Hainan is a major tourist province in China, and Sanya is one of the famous tourist cities. The sudden closure of the city caught many tourists off guard. Official data said that more than 80,000 foreign tourists were stranded.
China is the only major economy in the world that still adheres to the policy of “clearing zero”. The country has recorded fewer than 15,000 deaths since the coronavirus pandemic, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. At the same time, ordinary citizens are grumbling over the economic impact of strict regulations such as mass testing and local lockdowns.
Reuters reported that Chinese businessman Yang Jing lived with her husband and children in a four-star hotel out of their own pockets. The family eats cupped instant noodles every day to avoid spending more on food.
“It was the worst holiday of my life,” Ms Yang, who lives in China’s Jiangxi province, told Reuters on Sunday. She is in her 40s.
CCTV quoted the railway department as saying that the sale of train tickets leaving Sanya had been suspended on Saturday. According to data provider Variflight, more than 80% of flights to and from Sanya have been cancelled that day.
Hainan has been closed to overseas tourists for the past two-and-a-half years after China stopped issuing tourist visas and imposed strict quarantine rules in response to the Covid-19 outbreak.
Although the government said that you can continue to stay in hotels at half price. But on Sunday, dozens of tourists complained in WeChat groups that their hotels had not implemented such a rule and that they still had to pay similar prices. Two stranded tourists told Reuters that was the case for them.
“We are now trying to find a way to complain and defend our rights, but so far, no official agency has contacted us or expressed any interest in us,” said a woman Zhou from Jiangsu province in eastern China.
A foreign tourist who lives in China and is currently on his honeymoon in Sanya said other problems faced by stranded tourists include prices for food takeaways, hotel dining prices, and a sharp rise in airfare prices out of Hainan. The man, who did not want to be named, said the food supply at his hotel was also running low.
“We just hope this doesn’t become another Shanghai,” said the tourist, referring to the city’s recent two-month strict lockdown.
Domestic Chinese tourists have propped up Hainan’s tourism industry during the outbreak, but the sudden lockdown has angered some tourists who may never go there for vacation in the future.
“All in all, we will never come again!” Ms Zhou said. She and six other family members had been vacationing here.
Authorities said stranded tourists can leave the island starting this Saturday, provided they have taken five coronavirus tests and all come back negative. But Ms Yang said the wait for test results was so long that she had to be tested multiple times a day.
“We don’t know who to go to. There is only positive news about Sanya on the Internet. For example, the Sanya city government has properly accommodated 80,000 stranded tourists… It seems that the whole country thinks that we are not victims, but beneficiaries,” she said.