Guangzhou could be the next COVID-19 epicenter in China as new cases surge, according to official data released Tuesday.
Guangzhou, the provincial capital of Guangdong, reported 2,377 new local cases on Nov. 7, up from 1,971 the previous day. It was a significant increase from double-digit increases two weeks earlier.
According to China's health authority, new locally transmitted diseases increased to 7,475 on Nov. 7, up from 5,496 the day before and the highest level since May 1.
Guangzhou was responsible for approximately one-third of all new infections.
As the number of cases increased, the enormous southern city dubbed the "factory floor of the world" eclipsed the northern Inner Mongolia city of Hohhot as China's current COVID-19 epicenter, in its most severe outbreak yet.
Various degrees of bans and lockdowns have been implemented in many of Guangzhou's districts, including central Haizhu. However, Guangzhou has so far withstood a general shutdown similar to the one that occurred in Shanghai earlier this year.
The sudden rebound will put China's capacity to maintain its COVID-19 measures to the test, and it will also cast doubt on investors' hopes that the world's second-largest economy will soon be able to reopen its borders or even scale back on its zero-tolerance policy.
Shanghai, which is not currently experiencing a COVID-19 comeback, went into lockdown in April and May after reporting thousands of new infections per day in the final week of March.
In Guangdong province, the country's largest air show began on Tuesday in Zhuhai, with several spectators and delegates unexpectedly prevented from attending owing to COVID-19 restrictions enacted in response to rising incidents in the coastal city.
Zhengzhou, the capital of central Henan province and a major production center for Apple supplier Foxconn, reported 733 new local cases on Nov. 7, more than tripling the prior day.
Authorities in Beijing confirmed 64 new local infections, a minor increase compared to Guangzhou and Zhengzhou, but enough to prompt a new round of PCR tests for many of its citizens and the closure of more buildings and neighborhoods.
Chongqing, a city in southwest China, reported 281 new local cases, more than tripling from 120 the day before.
In response to a "complex and severe" situation, Chongqing officials have implemented new restrictions in at least four districts, closing several karaoke bars, dance clubs, and entertainment places.
The city of Hohhot in Inner Mongolia's coal-producing region recorded 1,760 new local cases on Nov. 7, moving higher from 1,013 the previous day.