China’s COVID-19 measures are the best, most cost-effective and will continue to improve, a spokesman for the ruling Communist Party said on Saturday.
“We firmly believe that the light is ahead and perseverance is victory,” Sun Yeli told a news conference in Beijing ahead of the party’s 20th congress.
Sun was responding to a question about whether China risks being isolated from the rest of the world if it continues with its zero-COVID policy.
President Xi Jinping is poised to win a third five-year term as general secretary of the party, the most powerful job in the country, at the congress to be held in the Great Hall of the People in Beijing for a week starting on Sunday.
The country’s ultra-strict COVID-19 curbs are taking a toll on businesses and jobseekers as Beijing stresses again and again the need to maintain its zero-tolerance approach to the virus, to save lives, if not livelihoods.
People have taken to the streets to protest the policies. “Nerves are high,” reports CNN, with Chinese people asking for freedom and are saying “no to lockdowns”.