From the news now coming out of China, it seems that the picture of the devastation caused there by the Corona wave, told in the Western media some time ago, had no substance whatsoever. Now the indications are that after the zero-covid policy was withdrawn, the infection spread at lightning speed. But the sub-variant of Omicron that spawned this wave is not deadly. This made people sick, hospitals were overcrowded, but gradually people began to recover. Something similar to what happened in India in January 2022 during the Omicron wave. Now there is news from China that normal activity is starting in the cities and the economy is picking up. This week, after three years when China eased restrictions on foreign travel, there was an influx of people getting and updating passports. Massive crowds can be seen at immigration offices across the country. The first batch of Chinese tourists arrived in Thailand on Monday. The impact of the opening up of the Chinese economy is also being felt on the international crude oil market. The effect of this policy change is also visible on the equity markets.
Investors hope the country’s reopening can revitalize the $1.7 trillion economy, which is currently struggling with its slowest growth in decades. But the policy change that has garnered the most attention is the removal of mandatory quarantine requirements. Until now, the rule was that those returning from abroad had to undergo a long quarantine. It showed immediate effect. As other countries have opened doors to people coming from China, it seems they are not concerned about the spread of the infection in China. On Sunday itself, the news came that tickets for flights from South Korea to China are completely sold out. So overall it’s good news for the world. This would alleviate at least one concern of the beleaguered global economy.