As nations like Sweden, Denmark, Switzerland, the UK, and many other nations drop all Covid-related restrictions, China is STILL holding on for dear life to their zero-case strategy (动态清零), even though it has been proven to be unsuccessful. China has never been independently proven to have reached zero-cases for long periods of time, but that has not stopped many experts from praising it.
In the early days of the pandemic, almost every nation agreed (with the exception of Sweden) that a strict lockdown policy was the most practical solution for stopping the disease and ‘flattening the curve’.
After two years of lockdowns, social distancing, wearing masks, mandatory vaccines, and spending piles of government cash to save tanking economies, the general consensus in many countries is now – “eh, perhaps we will simply have to learn to live with it.”
However, China is not yet ready to change their policy and missionaries are chomping at the bit to get back in. Unfortunately for those missionaries lined up to get back in, China is just as strict today as they have ever been and many of our partners are wondering if the country will ever open back up.
The Chinese house church Christians have been living in the most draconian environment on earth. At one time, China mandated a country-wide lockdown that lasted 76 days. After the country-wide lockdown was completed, targeted cities were locked down one after the other, over and over again.
In Tianjin for example, the government mandated the testing of all 14 million people and launched a lockdown that lasted half a year, only ending in January of this year!
The zero-case strategy methods harkens back to China’s way of governing under Mao Zedong and, according to their numbers, millions of lives have been saved, production has gone up, trade has increased, and the economy has boomed. Unfortunately, because of the travel restriction of foreign nationals, the claims simply cannot be independently verified with any great confidence.
There have been high hopes that China would soon open up after the Olympics were over, but it seems that may not be the case. Let’s see what the summer will bring.