Covid Case in Beijing Olympic Bubble Is Linked to a German Team

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A supervisor in Germany’s Olympic delegation has tested positive for the coronavirus within the closed loop in Beijing, the German Olympic Sports Confederation said on Thursday, confirming one of the first cases connected to an athletic team within the bubblelike environment meant to shield participants from the rest of the world. The positive case was identified on Sunday after a P.C.R. test administered in Zhangjiakou, where many of the snow events will take place about 100 miles northwest of Beijing, the confederation said. The supervisor is asymptomatic and is currently…

Vestas, a Danish Wind Giant, Warns of Supply Chain Turbulence

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Wind energy projects are being proposed around the world to help meet climate goals, but the largest maker of turbines is finding that supply chain issues and pandemic lockdowns are hampering wind farm construction and hurting financial results. “It is troubling and challenging out there,” Henrik Andersen, chief executive of the Danish company Vestas Wind Systems, said on a call with analysts on Wednesday. Mr. Andersen said the company had to recently navigate the disruption caused by the compulsory mass testing of 14 million residents in Tianjin, China, where Vestas…

I.M.F. Forecasts U.S. and China Slowdowns Will Hold Back Growth

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The pandemic has changed the way people in many parts of the world spend their money, shifting funds that might have been used for dining, travel and entertainment to goods they can play with, sit on or consume at home. That increased demand, combined with persistent difficulties in moving goods from one city or continent to another, skyrocketing energy prices and labor shortages, has driven up costs. Some of those pressures are expected to wane toward the end of the year — but not everywhere. “In the United States the…

Your Monday Briefing: A U.K. Accusation

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Good morning. We’re covering reports of Russia’s positioning in Ukraine, Beijing’s hard-line Olympic strategy and miserable conditions at a Chinese tire factory in Serbia. Britain accuses Russia of Ukraine plot The British government said that the Kremlin appeared to be developing plans to install a pro-Moscow leader in Ukraine. The highly unusual public statement, backed by U.S. officials, comes at a pivotal moment in high-stakes negotiations. Moscow has deployed more than 100,000 troops on Ukraine’s borders that could, according to American officials, attack anytime. According to the assessment, Russian planners…

In Wuhan, China, Anniversary of First Covid Lockdown Passes Quietly

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Wuhan, the Chinese city where Covid-19 first emerged in late 2019, began the world’s first coronavirus lockdown two years ago Sunday, shutting down public transportation and restricting departures for what proved to be 76 days. Since that move — stunning at the time — lockdowns of varying sizes and strictness have been carried out around the world. Now China, which has largely kept the virus at bay since quashing that first wave in Wuhan and other cities, is battling the far more contagious Omicron variant, shortly before the Winter Olympics…

Winter Olympic Torch Relay Shrinks to ‘Prioritize Safety.’

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The Olympic torch’s public journey to the opening ceremony of the Winter Games will be much more lonely and with much less fanfare. The torch relay, usually global and lasting for months, will be just three days, mostly local, and open only to select members of the public, according to organizers of the Beijing Olympics. “This torch relay will always prioritize safety,” Yang Haibin, an official from the organizing committee, said at a news briefing on Friday. The route will feature stops at the Great Wall, the Summer Palace, and…

Zero-Covid Policy Shakes Hong Kong’s Economy and Its ‘Soul’

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HONG KONG — Perry Lam felt confident that his business had weathered the worst of the pandemic. Several rounds of bar closures in Hong Kong had dimmed the city’s vibrant nightlife, threatening to destroy his brewery. But things seemed better late last year. After the government’s relentless effort to stamp out the virus, there were no local infections, bars began ordering kegs of his lager again and money was coming in. “You saw the silver lining,” said Mr. Lam, 34. That changed this month when Omicron started spreading, and officials…

Lockdown Made Their Second Date Last Weeks. Would Romance Bloom?

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When Zhao Xiaoqing first met Zhao Fei on a blind date, the sparks didn’t really fly. When they met for a second time at his home in northwest China in December, it lasted longer than they both expected. Facing a new outbreak of coronavirus cases, the health authorities announced a lockdown so sudden and severe that she didn’t have time to scurry home. So for nearly four weeks, Zhao Xiaoqing has lived in the city of Xianyang, in Shaanxi Province, with the family of Zhao Fei, a man she had…

China’s Olympics App for Athletes Has Security Flaws, Study Says

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In preparation for the 2021 Tokyo Olympics, Japan worked to develop a contact tracing app that would track foreign visitors, but concerns quickly mounted over bugs in the software and whether all visitors would own smartphones on which to install the app. The Citizen Lab report said MY2022 failed to confirm a unique encryption signature with the server where it was transferring data. In effect, that meant hackers could intercept the data without Chinese officials necessarily knowing. Other parts of the app, like its built-in messaging service, failed to encrypt…

China Won’t Sell Olympics Tickets to Chinese Public

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China had already barred foreign spectators from attending the Winter Games that begin in Beijing in less than a month. On Monday, it announced that most Chinese people won’t be able to attend either. Citing the evolving threat from the coronavirus pandemic, the Beijing 2022 organizing committee announced that it was ending ticket sales to the events “to ensure the safety of all participants and spectators.” The decision came less than two days after health authorities reported Beijing’s first case of the Omicron variant and ordered an immediate lockdown and…

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