The Chinese capital Beijing has promised to expedite reopening of shopping malls and supermarkets that are key to residents' livelihood after they are closed to facilitate epidemic control and prevention.
Speaking at a media conference on Thursday, Beijing municipal government spokesperson Xu Hejian said such stores, if hit by the COVID-19 outbreak, are allowed to reopen after one day of required closure, and will not be closed for more than three days.
The new permission is amid a raft of supportive measures announced by the city to ensure smooth operation of the city and stabilize market prices while striving to corral the outbreak.
Responding to public concerns, the Beijing government will also rev up support for residents who have to leave their closed-off compounds to seek medical services, Xu said. Garbage from high-risk areas will also be taken care of, the official added.
Beijing on Thursday reported 424 locally transmitted confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 1,436 locally transmitted asymptomatic cases.