BEIJING — China’s “zero tolerance” strategy of trying to isolate every case and stop transmission of the coronavirus has kept the country of 1.4 billion people largely free of the disease.
But the public and businesses are paying a steep price. The government has renewed city lockdowns and travel controls in some areas to quash outbreaks that began in July. Most of China is open for travel, but tourists are reluctant to risk getting caught in a lockdown. That led to a slump in August consumer spending.
International athletes are due to compete in the Winter Olympics in Beijing in February, but authorities haven’t said if spectators from abroad will be allowed into the country.
China has reported 4,636 confirmed deaths -- none since February -- and 95,577 confirmed cases since early 2020. The total reported cases is smaller than one-day new infections in the United States, India and some other countries.
MORE ON THE PANDEMIC:
— Johnson & Johnson: Booster dose provides strong response
— China keeps virus at bay, at high cost, ahead of Olympics
— Thai campaign to vaccinate schoolchildren makes progress
— Q&A: America’s new Covid-19 rules for international travel
— See AP coverage at https://apnews.com/hub/coronavirus-pandemic
HERE’S WHAT ELSE IS HAPPENING:
NEW DELHI — India says the British government’s decision not to recognize coronavirus vaccine certificates issued by Indian authorities is a “discriminatory policy” that will impact its citizens who want to travel to that country.
Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla says the new rules could force India to “impose reciprocal measures” if the matter is not resolved.
The new rules require Indians visiting the U.K to quarantine themselves for 10 days and undergo Covid-19 tests even if they are fully vaccinated with AstraZeneca vaccines made under license in India.
The rules take effect next month. India’s Serum Institute, which makes the AstraZeneca vaccine, has not applied for its approval by the European Union.
Most people in India have been vaccinated with the Indian-made AstraZeneca vaccine. Others have received COVAXIN, which is not used in Britain.
India, the world’s largest vaccine producer, said Monday it will resume exports and donations of surplus coronavirus vaccines in October after a several-month freeze due to a massive surge in domestic infections.
WARSAW, Poland — Poland’s government is recommending a third dose of vaccine to medical workers and people over age 50.
Deputy Health Minister Waldemar Kraska says the third dose is recommended after six months from the full immunization, also with the one-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccines. The booster will be administered with Pfizer and Moderna products, which health experts say can be mixed with other vaccines.
Registration for the third dose will start Sept. 24.
In Poland, more than 19 million of the 38 million population have been fully immunized. There have been more than 75,500 confirmed deaths.
BANGKOK — Health officials in Bangkok have made headway in their effort to vaccinate children against the coronavirus, giving shots of the Pfizer vaccine to students ages 12 to 18 with underlying diseases.
Vaccinations for that age group were first offered last month through hospitals, but now are being arranged by schools. A separate campaign by a medical research institute on Monday began inoculating children aged 10 to 18 with China’s Sinopharm vaccine.
On Tuesday, 1,500 students received shots of the Pfizer vaccine, 800 for the first time and 700 as a follow-up to their first shot in August.
The Health Ministry plans to give Pfizer shots to all students ages 12 to 18 nationwide on Oct. 4, starting with the 29 provinces most affected by the coronavirus, including Bangkok. About 41% of the population is fully vaccinated.
The Health Ministry on Tuesday announced 10,919 cases and 143 deaths, bringing the totals to 1.5 million confirmed cases and 15,612 confirmed deaths.