BEIJING: Some companies in Wuhan, the Chinese city where the novel coronavirus outbreak emerged late last year, are to be allowed to return to work, provincial officials said on Wednesday (Mar 11).

Businesses involved in providing daily necessities can resume work and production immediately, as can those that are key to “global industrial chains” after getting approval, said the Hubei provincial government.

Other companies are expected to resume production only after Mar 20.

READ: China’s new COVID-19 cases rise on infections from abroad

Similar rules apply in areas considered high-risk in the province outside Wuhan, where companies involved in epidemic prevention, public utilities and providing necessities may resume work.

In areas considered medium or low risk, there is a broader range of companies allowed to return to work.

A man wearing a face mask stands inside a shop with the roller shutter half closed, in Wuhan, the epicentre of the novel coronavirus outbreak, Hubei province, China March 6, 2020. REUTERS/Stringer

Passenger flights, trains, cars, ships and city buses in middle- and low-risk areas – moving within the province and excluding Wuhan – will “gradually resume operations” as well, without giving any timeframe.

Authorities said they will continue strict control measures on channels out of Wuhan and Hubei.

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