Chinese Communist Party economists are weighing the value of a cash injection for Chinese citizens in the form of a check.
Strict COVID-19 precautions persist in China as the country still struggles to rid itself of the viral pandemic. The government’s zero-tolerance policy for COVID-19 infections has had cascading ramifications on China’s economy and consumers.
Chinese economists now say a cash injection could be just what the country needs to bounce back.
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“Central fiscal expenditures are important because local finances are in a tight spot right now, and even if there are some local governments that run a fiscal surplus, I don’t think they will be so generous,” Renmin director Mao Zhenhua said. University Institute of Economic Research.
Mao went on to assert that China would better serve its consumer population by foregoing commercial coupons and non-cash vouchers in favor of electronic currency. Mao suggested coupons worth about $700 US.
“Many of the consumer coupons we mentioned earlier are actually merchant discount coupons, they have no cash value,” Mao added.
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China recently confirmed its first Death from COVID-19 in nearly six months as the country grapples with another recent outbreak of infections.
On Sunday, China’s National Health Commission reported the death of an 87-year-old man from COVID-19 in Beijing. The last reported death was in Shanghai on May 26.
While China has an overall vaccination rate of more than 92% after receiving at least one dose, that number is considerably lower among the elderly, particularly those over 80, where it drops to just 65%. The commission did not give details about the vaccination status of the last deceased.
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That vulnerability is seen as one of the reasons China has kept its borders mostly closed and sticks to its rigid “zero-COVID” policy that seeks to eliminate infections through lockdowns, quarantines, case tracing and mass testing. , despite the impact on normal life and the economy and increased public anger against the authorities.
Nearly three years into the pandemic, while the rest of the world has largely opened up and the impact on the Chinese economy is mounting, Beijing has kept its borders closed and discouraged travel even within the country.
Fox News’ Bradford Betz contributed to this report.