Updates on Novel Coronavirus Outbreak - 13 February

Published on 2020-02-13

In this message we collected some of the most up-to-date information in regards to novel coronavirus cases in Shanghai, advice for the public and businesses.

Call for Concerns/Queries

Businesses and individuals who have any concerns/queries, please contact Chamber staff James or Janet for the most updated information. 

  • James.Dunn@britishchambershanghai.cn
  • Janet.Jiang@britishchambershanghai.cn


[Updated on 13 Feb] Coronavirus: Q&A for British Nationals in China

Q: Why has the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) changed its travel advice to advise that all British nationals currently in China leave if they are able to?

A: The Chinese government continues to impose restrictions on travel and movement within China. This includes the closure of some highways and inter-city rail and tighter controls on entrance and exit to locations across the country. Some airlines have also suspended flights to and from mainland China. While commercial airlines are still operating, it may become harder to access departure options over the coming weeks. A number of countries have also announced restrictions on entry by travellers from China in response to the coronavirus outbreak. Any British citizens remaining in China who are able to leave China should do so.

Q: While in China, what measures should I be taking to protect myself/others?

A: The current advice is to prioritise good hand hygiene. This means washing hands frequently, especially before and after meals and putting on or removing a facemask. You should use an alcohol-based hand sanitiser while outside the home, especially when in public spaces and after touching objects that might spread the virus, such as door knobs, lift buttons and ATMs. Those with children should encourage regular hand-washing and the use of hand sanitiser. You should limit exposure to potential sources of infection including crowds. When outside the home, local Chinese authorities recommend using a properly-fittedN95 facemask without a ventilator. While advice on the efficacy of face masks varies between countries and health authorities, you may find it difficult to enter public places, access transportation or even enter your own home unless you are wearing a facemask. Therefore UK guidance is to comply with local regulations and wear a facemask outside the home.

Q: I’m currently in Wuhan/Hubei, concerned for my health and welfare and that of my dependants, and wish to leave. Will the UK Government help me to evacuate?

A: There are no current plans for the UK to operate further evacuation flights out of Wuhan. If you are a British national still in Wuhan or Hubei, please call +86 (0)10 8529 6600 or the FCO in London on +44 (0) 207 008 1500 immediately and make yourself known to us. We will do everything we can to support you and keep you informed of evacuation opportunities on flights operated by our international partners.

Q: Will the UK Government help me to evacuate?

A: There are no plans to arrange evacuation flights anywhere in China outside those which have already evacuated British nationals from Wuhan/Hubei Province. British Nationals are advised to check commercial flight options – an indicative list can be found below.

Above we selected the updated Q&As, for the full article, please click here to view on UK Consular WeChat.

Operational Flights to the UK from China

Due to the ongoing coronavirus outbreak, the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) advise against all travel to Hubei Province and all but essential travel to the rest of mainland China (not including Hong Kong and Macao).

If you are in China and able to leave, you should do so. The elderly and those with pre-existing medical conditions may be at heightened risk. Many commercial airlines, including British Airways and Virgin Atlantic, have suspended flights to and from China. 

As of 6 February, the following direct commercial flights from China to the UK were still operating.

  • Air China from Chengdu and Beijing Capitalto Heathrow and Shanghai Pudong to Gatwick
  • China Southern Airlines from Guangzhou, Zhengzhou, Sanya, and Chongqing to Heathrow
  • Tianjin Airlines from Chongqing and Xi’anXianyang to Heathrow
  • Hainan Airlines from Changsha to Heathrow
  • Beijing Capital Airlines from Qingdao to Heathrow
  • China Eastern Airlines from Shanghai to Heathrow and Gatwick
  • Shenzhen Airlines from Shenzhen to Heathrow

Click here to view the full article. [Source: UK Consular]


Former Shanghai Mayor Appointed Party Chief of China's Hubei Province

Ying Yong, former Shanghai Mayor, has been appointed today (13 February) secretary of the Hubei Provincial Committee of the Communist Party of China, replacing Jiang Chaoliang, according to a decision by the CPC Central Committee. 

Hubei Province Reports Jump in New Cases of COVID-19 after Diagnosis Criteria Revision

China's Hubei Province, center of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, reported 14,840 new confirmed cases and 242 new deaths on 12 February, the highest daily increases so far, local health authorities said on 13 February.

The Hubei Provincial Health Commission said the number of new cases included 13,332 clinically diagnosed cases, which have been seen as confirmed cases from 13 February.

It brought the total confirmed cases in the hard-hit province to 48,206. The province had a total of 1,310 deaths as of Wednesday.

Clinically diagnosed cases are unique to Hubei statistically. The inclusion of those cases drives the surge in the number of new confirmed cases. 

Any suspected cases with pneumonia-related computerized tomography (CT) scan results are counted as clinically diagnosed cases, according to the latest version of the diagnosis and treatment scheme released by the National Health Commission.

The provincial health commission said the diagnosis criteria revision has been made to give those who have been clinically diagnosed the timely standard treatment of confirmed cases to further improve the treatment success rate.

The province also saw 3,441 patients discharged from hospital after recovery as of Wednesday. Among the 33,693 hospitalized patients, 5,647 were still in severe condition and another 1,437 in critical condition.  [Source: Xinhua]


Support to Enterprises during NCP Prevention & Control

Policy Measures of Shanghai Municipal People’s Government on Effective Prevention and Control of the Epidemic As well as Support for the Steady and Healthy Operation of Enterprises 

To provide comprehensive support for enterprises in Shanghai to fight the epidemic of Pneumonia caused by Novel Coronavirus 2019 nCoV (referred to as NCP) and to effectively reduce the burden on enterprises, Shanghai Municipality released 28 policies measureswhich include intensifying fiscal support for enterprises playing key roles in epidemic prevention; temporary lowering and waiving of rentals for enterprises; tax concession for enterprises and individuals that meet relevant criteria; temporary exemption of regular lump-sum tax for individual businesses; temporary cut in medical insurance contribution rate for employers and etc. 

For full 28 measures in English, please click here.
For full 28 measures in Chinese, please click here 

COVID-19 Cases Updates

As of 12pm, 13 February, there are in total 315 cases in Shanghai. 236 patients were in stable condition, 10 were in critical condition and 6 were in severe condition, 62 were recovered and discharged, and 1 died. In addition, a total of 1,411 suspected cases have been ruled out, and 202 suspected cases are still being investigated. Please click here for more details about 2019-nCoV cases in China and around the world.   


Chamber Office Hours during 17 - 21 February

To avoid the risk of cross-infection, the physical office remains closed from 17 to 21 February. Our team will be working remotely to bring you the latest information and support. If you would like to contact any of the Chamber staff, please find below the contact details. 

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We hope the above information is useful to help you make the best decision for you, your family and your business. British Chamber Shanghai continues to closely monitor the coronavirus and will keep members updated of important developments.