Shanghai set out plans on May 16 for the end of a painful COVID-19 lockdown that has lasted more than six weeks, heavily bruising China’s economy, and for the return of more normal life from June 1.

Shanghai is tightening an already strict COVID-19 lockdown in a fresh push to eliminate infections outside quarantined areas of China’s biggest city by late this month, people familiar with the matter said.

China’s commercial capital of Shanghai was dealt a blow on May 2 as authorities reported 58 new COVID-19 cases outside areas under strict lockdown, while Beijing pressed on with testing millions of people on a May Day holiday few were celebrating.

A second Global COVID-19 Summit will be held virtually during May for countries to discuss efforts to end the pandemic and prepare for future health threats, according to a joint statement on April 18.

Coronavirus infections in Asia passed 100 million on March 30, according to a Reuters tally, as the region records a resurgence in cases dominated by the BA.2 Omicron sub-variant.

China’s financial hub of Shanghai launched a two-stage lockdown of its 26 million residents on March 28, closing bridges and tunnels and restricting highway traffic in a scramble to contain surging COVID-19 cases.

China’s financial hub of Shanghai said on March 27 it would lock down the city in two stages to carry out COVID-19 testing over a nine-day period, after reporting a new daily record for asymptomatic infections.

Shanghai’s bespoke approach to tackling coronavirus outbreaks is coming under strain as new cases rise in the Chinese metropolis, with authorities reluctant to impose a comprehensive lockdown as other cities have done.

Mainland China reported more than 1,500 new local COVID-19 infections on March 12, the most since the first nationwide outbreak in early 2020, as the Omicron variant prompted Beijing to introduce self-testing kits for the first time.