“Painting the ground as a prison” is back, thanks to China’s dynamic “zero-COVID” policy. Netizens are angry with temporary quarantine points that have been posted online.

In a video posted online, there are many circles marked by white powder on a rural road. A lot of people were stuck in each circle. This is a temporary quarantine site.

Netizens said this is a modern version of “painting the ground as a prison” and asked whether or not the government is treating its citizens like humans.

It’s not just in the countryside. In China’s various big cities, such prison-like temporary quarantine sites can be seen everywhere. Albeit more sophisticated.

“Zero-COVID” has costs that go beyond health. Nearly 20% of young people are unemployed. China used to be the world’s manufacturing hub, but no longer. In June, the IMF and the World Bank said that China’s GDP goal for 2022 would be cut by 1 percentage point due to strict COVID measures. China’s economic downfall, which takes up one-fifth of the world’s growth, would in turn hurt the whole world.

The lockdowns, accompanied by a strict “zero-COVID” policy, has also pushed a lot of foreign companies out of China. Foreign companies are moving production and links in the supply chain from China to Vietnam, Thailand, India, Mexico, and even returning to the U.S.

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