fredag 4. mars 2022

Hong Kong shops ration food and drugs to curb panic buying amid Covid lockdown fears

Soaring Covid-19 cases in Hong Kong have led to court services being suspended for a month as the two largest consumer retail chains ration certain items. The Asian financial hub has recorded more than 50,000 new coronavirus cases for the third consecutive day in what the authorities called a “fifth wave”, overwhelming hospitals and shattering the city’s zero-Covid strategy.

In an attempt to curb panic buying, supermarket chain ParknShop on Friday announced limits of five items per customer on staples such as rice, canned food and toilet paper while pharmacy Watsons put the same limits on medication for pain, fever and colds, Hong Kong media reported.

ParknShop had already announced shorter opening hours earlier in the week, with some of its 200 branches shutting at 3pm – by which time many shops across the Asian financial hub have been stripped of fresh and frozen meat and vegetables in recent days.