China has reported its first slew of patients infected with the UK strain of COVID. One person from the southern Guangdong Province and another individual from Shanghai were tested positive for the strain, which has been named B.1.1.7. The new strain has triggered a massive surge in infections in the UK, with daily cases rising from around 15,000 in early December to more than 50,000 by the end of the month. The fast-spreading CCP Virus variety will probably trigger a rise in the number of COVID-19 patients in China. But since Beijing is likely to underreport the infection rates, a true picture of the new virus’s impact will not be known to the outside world.
COVID-19 data discrepancy in China
According to data released by the Chinese government, the city of Wuhan, the epicenter of the pandemic, has had a total of around 50,000 COVID-19 cases. A report by the Chinese Center for Disease Control (CCDC) stated that almost 4.4 percent of Wuhan’s 11 million people had developed antibodies against the CCP virus by April. If this is true, it would mean that around 480,000 people were infected in the city back in April, which is 10 times greater than even the current reported numbers. And Wuhan only accounts for around 0.79 percent of the total population of China. Outside Wuhan, the antibody rates were lower. For instance, in some cities in Hubei, the rate was just 0.44 percent. Outside of Hubei, only two people were found to be carrying antibodies in a test that involved 12,000 people.
According to Ms. Li from Beijing, a source who talked to The Epoch Times, the viral outbreak in the city is actually far worse than what is being reported by the government. The narrative being spread around is that many of the infections in China were brought into the country by people who had gone overseas. However, Li asks a simple question — how is it that these people were all healthy when they were outside China and then reported to be infected when they came back? Ms. Li pointed out that Chinese officials are afraid of revealing the scale of the viral outbreak since it could harm the image of the communist regime.
Meanwhile, Beijing has been spreading propaganda depicting Wuhan as a tourist center abuzz with crowded events and nightlife for much of December. The government even prominently publicized the New Year celebrations in the city in which thousands of people can be seen on the streets with no proper social distancing rules being followed. After the celebrations, the Wuhan Emergency Management Bureau asked people to stock up on materials like first aid kits, masks, and other emergency supplies.
The new CCP virus strain from the UK has evolved through multiple mutations of the virus’ spike proteins. In fact, the CSIR-Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB) in India has identified the strain to have 17 mutations in total, with eight of them affecting the spike protein, which is what makes it extremely transmittable. B.1.1.7 is estimated to be around 70 percent more transmissible when compared to the first strain of CCP virus. The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has succeeded in isolating the UK strain. Even though the UK strain has undergone modification, the vaccines being currently distributed are expected to be effective on the mutated ones as well.