China uses lockdown easing policy to sell more face masks and cold medicine

Chinese state media this week sought a silver lining to the easing of dictator Xi Jinping’s deranged “zero Covid” policies by touting an expected spike in demand for face masks and over-the-counter cold medicine.

The Chinese Communist Party still refuses to admit that there was anything wrong with zero Covid, other than to suggest that a few local officials might have gotten carried away with implementing Xi’s perfect strategy to control the Wuhan coronavirus. The official euphemism adopted by Communist officials over the past two weeks, employed with strict conformity in all Chinese state media, is “optimization” – not “relaxation” or “backtracking”. .

In the face of massive public protests over horrific deaths caused by coronavirus lockdowns, which Beijing has tried unsuccessfully to dismiss fueled by foreign agents, the regime announcement last week that he would reverse some of the more draconian quarantine policies.

The regime then tried to blame the spike in coronavirus infections across China on the eased restrictions, a claim by the World Health Organization (WHO) strongly disputed Thursday.

Among other counterpoints, the WHO noted documentary evidence that Chinese coronavirus cases were rising long before restrictions were eased – indeed this was one of the reasons anti-lockdown protests spread like wildfire. wildfire across China. People were angry that coronavirus infections were rising despite these citywide lockdowns and testing mandates; they objected to suffering under lockdown but still received omicron waves, and they wondered why China couldn’t learn to live with the Wuhan virus like the rest of the world.

Tuesday, the state world times sought a silver lining in this dark political, economic and health cloud by reporting that “Chinese medical equipment manufacturers are increasing production to meet the growing demand for protective masks, anti-fever tablets and electrolyte water” .

Pharmacist Zhu Qianqian prepares medicine for a customer at a pharmacy in Beijing, Wednesday, Dec. 14, 2022. (Dake Kang/AP)

Evidence of increased demand was somewhat thin, consisting of increased searches for N95 masks on Chinese websites and a world times reporter finding out-of-stock medical-grade masks at a few online retailers. N95 masks are much more effective than cloth masks and similar alternatives, but they haven’t been used as widely during the pandemic because they’re also much more expensive, require training to use properly, and are often in short supply.

The world times cited other manufacturers who anticipated growing public demand for products capable of treating symptoms of the more contagious, but generally milder, omicron variants of the Chinese coronavirus, including disinfectants, electrolyte water and especially ibuprofen. These demand explosion forecasts were, again, largely based on increased internet searches.

“Shandong Xinhua Pharmaceutical Co is one of the two major producers of ibuprofen raw material. A company representative told the world times via its investor hotline that its factories are scrambling to produce more ibuprofen raw materials to meet growing demand, and capacity will be adjusted according to market needs,” the Chinese Communist newspaper reported.

Another one world times article found that pharmaceutical inventories were increasing due to “media reports of high demand for these drugs,” such as reports filed by the world times himself.

Shandong Xinhua Pharmaceutical and its production of ibuprofen were once again touted as a sign of economic gold in these dreary coronavirus hills, along with “booming demand” for some Chinese herbal medicines and strong retail sales. China for imported Western cold medicines and vitamin supplements.

The world times applauded Chinese government agencies for managing this increase in demand through measures such as stricter inspections of medical production lines, higher quality standards for imports and even a list of traditional remedies that work best for various coronavirus symptoms. The article concluded by quoting analysts who said bare store shelves would not be a problem as production ramps up early to meet anticipated demand.

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