Skip to content
Menu

Beijing cancels vaccine mandate less than two days after announcement

Unidentified official said people can go to public venues upon showing negative Covid-19 test result ‘no older than 72 hours’; capital city to continue promoting vaccination on a ‘voluntary, informed and consented’ basis.

ARTICLE BY

PUBLISHED

Unidentified official said people can go to public venues upon showing negative Covid-19 test result ‘no older than 72 hours’; capital city to continue promoting vaccination on a ‘voluntary, informed and consented’ basis.

ARTICLE BY

PUBLISHED

UPDATED: 22 Dec 2023, 4:42 am

Beijing announced on Wednesday what was to become mainland China’s first Covid-19 vaccine mandate but the capital city has abruptly cancelled the plan that was scheduled to be imposed on Monday. 

Officials have previously said that the now-scrapped vaccine mandate would only allow the vaccinated to enter some public venues like educational institutions, museums, libraries, cinemas, art galleries, cultural centres, sports centres, entertainment venues and various activity centres. 

Authorities eventually withdrew the mandate after the news raised criticisms from residents. 

An unidentified official said in an interview with Beijing Daily that people would be able to enter all public venues if they can “provide a negative Covid-19 test result no older than 72 hours” and have their temperature checked at the entrance, while the city will continue to promote vaccination on a “voluntary, informed and consented basis”. 

Influential commentator Hu Xijin, who is a former editor-in-chief of Global Times, said on his official Weibo account, “The reversal shows the power of public opinions. Chinese society is dominated by the government. They backed up in the face of a public pushback. That means they accept the public’s view of the vaccine mandate as illegal.”

Nearly 90 per cent of mainland China’s population are fully vaccinated, with a lower rate among the elderly people. The elderly vaccination rate is 80 per cent in Beijing and 70 per cent in Shanghai, according to Bloomberg’s report. 

 

UPDATED: 22 Dec 2023, 4:42 am

Send this to a friend