Resolve to resume production crucial to China’s economic restart

Source:Global Times Published: 2020/2/11 23:33:41

Photo: GT

The unusually long holidays must come to an end as China is determined to return to work to restart its economy amid efforts to combat the novel coronavirus pneumonia (NCP).

Even in the midst of the epidemic, companies and local governments across the country should work together toward the same goal of business resumption, which is essential not only to bring the Chinese economy back to normal, but also to counter the hype over the "China collapse" theory.

While businesses in most regions of the country were told to postpone reopening until the beginning of this week, various local authorities have still taken measures discouraging work resumption. It is, of course, understandable for local authorities to take some control measures, but preventing companies from resuming work is not a sustainable way of containing the NCP.

Moreover, there are rumors regarding NCP cases found at factories that resumed operation, which may scare companies that are planning for a return to work. The motive behind the resumption rumors is obviously sinister, even though it is not hard to clarify it. The malicious rumors reflect someone's dark desire to see the Chinese economy plunged into chaos amid fears of the NCP. While rumors may spread panic and increase anxiety over the resumption of work to a certain extent, they won't weaken China's determination to restart its economy from the shock of the NCP outbreak.

The more headwinds facing China, the more imperative it is for businesses nationwide to resume production, or at least to prepare for the return to work. Of course, this doesn't mean that all companies across the country should return to work at the same time, disregarding their epidemic control conditions. Authorities and companies should arrange work resumption in a safe and orderly manner based on the virus control situation. It is unrealistic for local governments to expect companies to resume production only after the NCP is declared completely under control.

At this critical moment for both the NCP's containment and China's economic restart, the focus of epidemic prevention and control should not be limited to restrictions on the movement of people and transportation, but should be concentrated on contingency plans for dealing with emergencies. Authorities should offer essential guidance and intelligence to local companies in view of questions like how to ensure the safety and health of employees and what should be the response if anyone is confirmed infected with the NCP.

So far, it is generally believed that the NCP outbreak will have a temporary impact on the Chinese economy. Yet, if China doesn't have the resolve to overcome the obstacles and return to work, it will affect the supply of medical goods needed for the prevention of the epidemic in the short term. In the long run, the Chinese economy will be sick with the contagion resulting from shortages of various goods and materials as well as the plight of small and medium-sized enterprises.

If it's any comfort, observers generally predict that there will be a rebound in consumption and production after the epidemic. But the rebound will not come if we just sit there waiting. Actual efforts need to be made nationwide now to promote the anticipated arrival of an economic rebound in an all-round way.

Posted in: GT VOICE

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