Zhengzhou, home to Apple Inc.’s largest iPhone manufacturing site, will be largely locked down for five days as officials in the Chinese city resort to tighter curbs to quell a swelling Covid-19 outbreak.
Employees at the Foxconn Technology Group factory clashed with white-clad security personnel, according to videos from the scene, with anger over unpaid wages and fear over virus infections fueling the unrest.
According to the Zhengzhou government’s Wednesday night directive, people living in areas designated as high risk must stay at home, while others are advised not to leave their residences or compounds unless necessary. Daily PCR tests will also be conducted.
The district where Foxconn’s factories are located wasn’t included in the eight districts to be placed under lockdown, according to the government’s statement.
Still, the plant is in an area already classed as high risk, which means lockdown-like movement restrictions remain in place. The company has been operating a so-called closed loop at the site for some time, where workers are effectively confined to their dorms and the production line, with no contact with the outside. The systems allow factories to maintain production amid Covid lockdowns, but the requirement to seal workers off has led to unrest both in Zhengzhou and elsewhere.