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Chengdu, Chinese city of 21 million, enter new COVID-19 lockdown

Chengdu, the capital of Sichuan province, is the fourth Chinese megacity to be locked down this year. File Photo by Stephen Shaver/UPI
Chengdu, the capital of Sichuan province, is the fourth Chinese megacity to be locked down this year. File Photo by Stephen Shaver/UPI | License Photo

Sept. 1 (UPI) -- Officials in China decided Thursday to lock down Chengdu, a city of more than 21 million, and test residents there as part of the country's "Zero COVID" policy.

The city government said the mandatory testing would begin Thursday and continue through Sunday. All residents are ordered to stay home, and only one person per household per day is allowed to shop for necessities.

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The Chengdu lockdown came just days after new COVID-19 lockdowns were announced in Shenzhen, known as China's "Silicon Valley." The Chinese financial hub of Shanghai ended a two-month lockdown in June, only to extend restrictions and a new round mass testing for millions of residents there.

Thursday's lockdown is part of Beijing's "Zero COVID" policy, which it says is saving lives.

On Wednesday, Chengdu reported more than 150 COVID-19 cases. Over the past week, the number is over 700.

Chengdu officials have not publicly said how long the new lockdown will last, but it's expected to be another economic hit since the city operates several multinational auto and technology plants like Intel and Toyota. However, it may not be as much of a blow as the Shanghai lockdown.

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"We don't expect a Shanghai-style setback," Chinese economist David Qu said according to Bloomberg. "We do expect a widespread impact on sentiment that amplifies the damage beyond the direct hit to activity."

Chengdu, the capital of Sichuan province, is the fourth Chinese megacity to be locked down this year.

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