Beijing (PingWest)—The virus-hit Hubei province will lift outbound travel restrictions on March 25 in all areas except the provincial capital Wuhan, while schools will remain closed until further notice, local authorities said Tuesday.
Wuhan, the epicenter of the Covid-19 outbreak, to ease the lockdown from April 8. Previously, to prevent the spread of the disease, the city was placed under state-imposed lockdown on January 23, with all flights, trains and buses canceled and highways entrances blocked. Other cities in Hubei province soon followed suit, adopting similar restrictions.
According to the latest announcement released by Hubei authorities, starting from Wednesday, people in Hubei, except for Wuhan, will be allowed to leave the province if they have a green QR code on their mobile phones. Later, on April 8, Wuhan residents with a green QR code will also be allowed to leave the city and the province.
Based on the provincial epidemic prevention database, people who are healthy and have not been in contact with any suspected or confirmed cases can get a green code.
The easing of travel restrictions follows a significant reduction in new infections in Hubei. Since March 19, new confirmed cases have dropped to zero for five consecutive days. Thousands of new cases are confirmed daily during the worst period of the pandemic outbreak in the city. On March 24, the province reported one new case in Wuhan, a doctor at the Hubei General Hospital.
The province has accounted for the majority of infections and deaths in China, with 67,801 cases and 3,160 fatalities reported as of Monday.
Wuhan, a city with some 11 million people, is one of China's largest industrial hubs and home to its steel industry. Several suppliers and international business operations, including Dongfeng Motor Group, Nissan, Honda, and General Motors, are based in the city.