Did China lock down Shanghai, not to fight COVID-19, but to spite US companies over the Ukraine war?
Take a look at the viral article, and find out what the facts really are!
Claim : China Locked Down Shanghai To Spite US Over Ukraine War!
People are sharing an article by Kanthan Pillay, which claimed that China locked down Shanghai not to fight COVID-19 but to spite US companies over the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
It’s a rather long post, so feel free to skip to the next section for the facts…
Shanghai Lockdown Not Because Of Covid -19!!
Two weeks after Russia’s forces moved into Ukraine, China locked down Shanghai.
Let me hit you with some bullet points:
More than 800 multinational corporations have regional headquarters in Shanghai . Among them, 121 are Fortune Global 500 companies, including Apple, Qualcomm, General Motors, Pepsico.
More than 70 000 foreign companies have offices in Shanghai. More than 24 000 of these are Japanese.
Truth : China Did NOT Lock Down Shanghai To Spite US Over Ukraine War!
I have read many conspiracy theories about China and the Ukraine War, but this has to be one of the stupidest I have read to date.
I cannot believe I have to actually explain why China did not lock down Shanghai just to spite US companies over Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
But here we go…
Fact #1 : China Has Been Locking Down Cities Since 2020
First, I should point out that China has been locking down cities since the COVID-19 pandemic started in Wuhan.
This isn’t a new tactic. China locks down entire cities as part of their COVID Zero policy.
In fact, China locked down 4 additional cities in the first two months of 2022, before Russia’s invasion of Ukraine :
- 4 January : Yuzhou, Henan province
- 11 January : Anyang and Zhengzhou, Henan province
- 7 February : Baise, Jilin province
It is therefore ridiculous for Kanthan Pillay to claim that China locked down Shanghai to spite US companies.
Fact #2 : Shanghai’s COVID-19 Outbreak Began On 28 February
Ironically, Shanghai’s COVID-19 outbreak began on the same day Russia chose to invade Ukraine – 28 February 2022.
I’m surprised Kanthan Pillay did not suggest that the Chinese introduced the Shanghai outbreak as part of a false flag operation to spite US companies. LOL!
Fact #3 : Shanghai Lockdown Only Started A Month Later
Kanthan Pillay falsely claimed that China locked down Shanghai two weeks after Russia invaded Ukraine. Why two weeks? Why not immediately?
In any case, Shanghai only adopted “area-separated and batch-separated control” on 28 March 2022 – a month after their COVID-19 outbreak started, and a month after Russia invaded Ukraine.
Only a week later – on 5 April 2022, did Shanghai put the entire city under lockdown.
Fact #4 : Hong Kong Has More Regional HQs Than Shanghai
In his first “bullet point”, Kanthan Pillay said that more than 800 multinational corporations have their regional headquarters in Shanghai.
What he does not point out to you is that Hong Kong has almost twice as many regional headquarters as Shanghai – 1,457 as of 2021.
If the Chinese wanted to “attack” US companies by targeting their regional headquarters, they would do better to lock down Hong Kong.
But wait – Hong Kong is still NOT under lockdown, even with a massive surge of Omicron cases.
Fact #5 : Regional HQ Not As Important As Factories
Kanthan Pillay does not seem to understand that regional headquarters are not as critical to US companies as the factories that produce goods for them.
Many employees of these regional headquarters can conduct their work from home, even hold meetings virtually from anywhere in the world. So using regional headquarters and design centres as examples of Chinese sabotage is stupid.
Factories, on the other hand, cannot produce goods virtually. Hence, factories that produce goods for US companies are far more important than regional HQs and design centres.
Fact #6 : Shanghai Lockdown Affects All Companies
Kanthan Pillay is apparently unaware thatChina’s lockdown of Shanghai is not limited to US citizens or companies.
The Shanghai lockdown affects all residents, whether they are Chinese citizens or foreigners. Similarly, Chinese companies are affected just as badly as their Western counterparts.
Even more importantly – there are far more Chinese companies in Shanghai than Western companies. More Chinese citizens are being employed by Chinese companies in Shanghai, than Western companies.
If China intentionally locked down Shanghai to spite US companies, they would be sacrificing their own economy to do that.
The Chinese are not quite so stupid as to cut off their noses, just to spite their own faces.
Fact #7 : TSMC Shanghai Fab Is Not State Of Art
Kanthan Pillay also seems to be unaware that the TSMC plant in China is not state of the art, and does not manufacture 7 nm or 5 nm chips as he alleged.
The TSMC Fab 10 foundry in Shanghai was completed around the end of 2004, and produces 8-inch wafers using old 0.25 micron and 0.35 micron processes from the 1990s.
Fact #8 : Shanghai Semiconductor Companies Not Affected By Lockdown
Despite the entire city of Shanghai being under strict lockdown, its semiconductor companies continued to maintain full production.
They managed to achieve this through closed-loop systems, where most employees work on-site while others work remotely from home.
Both TSMC and SMIC say that they are maintaining full production in Shanghai using such closed-loop systems.
Fact #9 : Companies Can Shift To Other Countries
Kanthan Pillay ludicrously believe that China shut down Shanghai to deliver “a body blow to global giants in the US sphere of influence“.
Multinational companies, especially those from the West, can and have shifted to other countries or states, if conditions become unfavourable.
Some have already started shifted production from China to Southeast Asian countries like Vietnam, Cambodia, Malaysia and Indonesia.
If China did really do this just to spite US companies, it would be one more reason to shift their operations to other countries. It’s not like they can only build factories in China.
Fact #10 : Chinese Sacrifice Will Not Help Russia
What Kanthan Pillay does not explain is WHY on Earth would China sacrifice its own people and economy to help Russia?
And how does crippling Shanghai’s economy help Russia? Sure, Tesla will miss its production target… again, but so what?
These are public-listed companies, not the US government. Whatever happens to these companies won’t have a material effect on the US government, only its shareholders.
Needless to say – it won’t sway Western sanctions on Russia, and it certainly won’t help Russia in any way.
Fact #11 : Western Economies Are Still Doing Fine
Kanthan Pillay ended his article by claiming that such actions by Russia and China have “brought the economies of the Western powers to a grinding halt“.
I have no idea what he has been smoking, but it must be some fantastic shit, because none of the Western economies are remotely close to collapsing!
In fact, the US Fed just made the biggest interest rate increase in 22 years, announcing a 0.5% interest rate hike to tackle inflation.
Other Western economies are poised to similarly raise their interest rates. They would not be raising interest rates if their economies were collapsing as Pillay alleged.
The Kanthan Pillay article is nothing more than a meaningless self-masturbatory fantasy.
Unfortunately, it’s being widely shared by the Chinese 50 Cent Army (wumao, 五毛) and pro-CCP netizens.
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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.
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