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China factory activity dips to 2-year low as Beijing battles COVID outbreak

The official Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI), a key gauge of manufacturing activity, clocked 47.4 in April - below the 50-point mark separating growth from contraction - as authorities said that a "decline in production and demand" has deepened

April 30, 2022 / 10:07 AM IST

China's manufacturing activity slumped to its lowest level since February 2020, official data showed, the latest sign of economic pain as Beijing doggedly pursues its zero-COVID response.

The official Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI), a key gauge of manufacturing activity, clocked 47.4 in April - below the 50-point mark separating growth from contraction - as authorities said that a "decline in production and demand" has deepened.

The figures come as Beijing's policy of swiftly stamping out infections with lockdowns and mass testing has been severely challenged by an Omicron-fuelled pandemic resurgence.

Dozens of cities, including economic powerhouses like Shenzhen and Shanghai, have been either fully or partially sealed off in recent months.