The South China Morning Post citing data from the National Health Commission (NHC), reported 1,337 locally transmitted cases of COVID-19 in China on Monday, March 14, an increase of almost fourfold from a week ago.

Due to the COVID fast-spreading situation, the China Development Forum, a high-level business conference in Beijing initially scheduled for March 19 to 22, has been postponed indefinitely.

With the fast-spreading Omicron variant, the NHC approved Covid-19 quick antigen testing for general use on Friday, March 11. China’s earlier technique based on nucleic acid tests – requiring medical staff to take samples – had grown more difficult in this period.

Some officials have been fired due to their ineffective containment of Covid pandemic.

Six Chinese officials were sacked in Guangdong (广东), after the southern province of China reported 256 new cases, including 194 asymptomatic cases on Saturday.

On the same day, northeastern province Jilin recorded 1,412 new cases, which accounted for 78 percent of the national total, up from 134 cases the day before.

Reuters cited Jilin provincial officials as saying that the increase “showed that some local areas, facing a rapid rise of epidemic, lacked the capacity to expand medical resources, resulting in limited admission of infections to centralized facilities within a short period of time.”

From March 10 to 12, Jilin (吉林) province fired three officials, including Wang Lu (王路), Deputy Secretary of the Jilin Municipal Committee.

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