Industrial production resumes as epidemic wanes in Hainan

2022-09-13 China Daily Editor:Li Yan

People shop at a supermarket in Sanya, Hainan province, on Sunday. (Photo by WU WEI/FOR CHINA DAILY)

30 major projects commence after more than 20,000 cases since last month

Industrial production and construction on key projects have resumed in Hainan province, as the fight against the latest COVID-19 outbreak on the tropical island enters the phase-out period, local officials said.

A joint commencement ceremony for 30 major projects, with total investment expected to reach 17.4 billion yuan ($2.51 billion), was held in the provincial capital Haikou on Friday.

Ding Hui, mayor of Haikou, said the city will do its best to ensure production is kept going to make up for the losses caused by the epidemic.

Key industrial parks, project developers and leading enterprises on the island have overcome multiple difficulties to resume work as quickly as possible, said local officials.

Hainan Refining &Chemical Co of Sinopec Group has recovered more than 90 percent of its production capacity, and its petrochemical industry chain is operating steadily, according to the administration of Yangpu Economic Development Zone in Hainan, a major industrial park that showcases the unique opening-up policies of Hainan Free Trade Port.

From Aug 1 to Sept 11, Hainan reported a total of 20,710 local cases of COVID-19, with 8,618 confirmed cases and 12,092 asymptomatic carriers. Sanya, the epicenter of Hainan's recent outbreak, reported a total of 15,645 COVID-19 cases during the period, according to the Hainan Provincial Health Commission.

On Sunday, the province recorded only one infection, which was an asymptomatic carrier in Sanya.

After being launched on Aug 6, static management was partially lifted in a number of Sanya's outer districts on Saturday. Downtown Sanya is still faced with 26 high-risk and 49 medium-risk areas as of Sept 10, said officials with the city's epidemic prevention and control headquarters.

Feng Fei, governor of Hainan, said at a special work meeting last week that the province will efficiently coordinate epidemic prevention and control and socioeconomic development, and make concentrated efforts to restore the normal state of growth, striving to achieve the annual goals set at the beginning of the year.

A medical team from Hunan province that helped Sanya fight COVID-19 returns home on Monday. (Photo by WU WEI/FOR CHINA DAILY)

To speed up the economic recovery, local industrial and agricultural authorities have introduced a slew of measures to help enterprises fight the epidemic, ensure supplies such as electricity and gas, optimize the allocation and transportation of agricultural materials, and expand the production and marketing channels for agricultural products.

Hainan has also increased financial support across a broad array of areas, said local officials.

Official data show that Hainan has broken ground on 102 key projects recently and around 1,030 large-scale enterprises have resumed normal production.

Two international freight routes-from Haikou to Paris, France, and from Haikou to Sydney, Australia-resumed operations on Sept 3 and 5, respectively.

The high-speed railway that loops around the tropical island resumed operation on Thursday, after being suspended for one month.

On Friday, the provincial COVID-19 prevention and control headquarters issued a notice on the full resumption of road transport across Hainan, on the condition of normalized epidemic prevention and control.

So far, fishermen in nine cities and counties in Hainan have restarted sea fishing operations, according to officials with the provincial agriculture and rural affairs department.

A detailed code of practice on epidemic prevention and control has been enforced for sea fishing, and strict epidemic prevention and control measures have been implemented in key areas such as fishing ports and seafood markets.

More than 21,000 medical workers from 20 provinces and regions came to Hainan to help during the recent epidemic and most of them had returned home as of Sept 11, said local officials.

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