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China records the highest number of daily infections in more than six weeks

The Chinese mainland on Friday recorded the highest number of daily local new COVID-19 infections in more than six weeks as the country struggles with an outbreak concentrated mainly in its northern provinces.

China reported 59 new locally transmitted infections on Oct. 29, the National Health Commission said Saturday, up from 48 a day earlier.

It was the highest number of new local infections since 16 September.

Most of the new local cases were in northern China, with infections reported in Heilongjiang, Inner Mongolia, Gansu, Beijing and Ningxia.

Including infections imported from abroad, China registered 78 new COVID-19 cases on October 29, up from 64 cases a day earlier.

China also reported 24 new asymptomatic cases, which it classifies separately from confirmed cases.

There were no new deaths, leaving the death toll unchanged at 4,636.

Although the number is small compared to infections elsewhere in the world, recent widespread outbreaks have forced officials to tighten restrictions and put pressure on the service sector, including tourism and catering businesses.

China’s border towns, which face a higher risk of infection from abroad and with relatively few resources, have tended to suffer more severe disruption than richer cities.

In Inner Mongolia, the government of Ejina Banner, a remote administrative department on China’s border with Mongolia, said it would transfer more than 9,400 stranded travelers to low-risk areas in the coming days, the official China Daily reported.

Ejina Banner has been hit hard by recent outbreaks and went into a lockdown last week.

Report from Reuters.

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