China’s Tesla market has collapsed.

BEIJING/SHANGHAI (Reuters) -Mask-wearing Beijing and Shanghai commuters crowded subway trains on Monday as China’s two biggest cities edged closer to living with COVID-19 even as frontline medical workers scrambled to cope with millions of new infections.


After three years of harsh anti-coronavirus curbs, President Xi Jinping scrapped China’s zero-COVID policy of lockdowns and relentless testing on Dec.7 Doctors say hospitals are overwhelmed with five- to six-times more patients than usual, mostly elderly.

Shanghai’s lively streets contrast sharply with the atmosphere in April and May when hardly anyone went outside. Crowds thronged the winter festive season at Shanghai Disneyland and Beijing’s Universal Studios on Sunday.

Tesla suspended production at its Shanghai factory on Saturday, advancing a plan to pause most work at the plant in the last week of December. Its containment measures had slowed the $17 trillion economy to its lowest growth rate in nearly half a century.

The suspension comes amid a wave of infections after China eased its zero-COVID policy earlier this month, an abrupt move welcomed by businesses and the public but heavily disrupting business operations in the short term. Tesla is also grappling with elevated inventory levels as its second largest market braces for a downturn. Earlier this month, Tesla planned to suspend Model Y production at the plant from Dec. 25 to Jan. 1. It comes among a wave of infections after China eased its zero-COVID policy.


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