Posted in: Headlines
Published:
March 31, 2020 9:54 AM

Shockingly, China’s Wet Markets are Reopening; Will We Ever Learn?

Reports show China's wet markets, which scientists believe triggered the coronavirus pandemic, have reopened after relaxed lockdown measures.
  • Fox and Daily Mail report wet markets in China, which are suspected to be the origin of coronavirus, are reopening.
  • Studies dating back to 2007 have described wet markets and bat consumption as a “time bomb” for a virus outbreak.
  • Authorities have to restrict wet markets to prevent new outbreaks, at least until the coronavirus pandemic subsides.

Wet markets in China have reportedly reopened after easing of lockdown measures across several cities. Studies dating back to 2007 have suggested that wet markets and the consumption of bats are a “time bomb” for a coronavirus outbreak.

Tucker Carlson said:

Wild animal wet markets have long been recognized as a major pandemic threat. As coronavirus spread, China announced it would crackdown on them obviously, but it looks like the crackdown didn’t last long.

With scientists pointing towards the Chinese horseshoe bat as the likely origin of coronavirus, the resumption of consuming and capturing bats poses a threat of the continuous spread of the virus.

A China-based correspondent for the Daily Mail revealed:

The markets have gone back to operating in exactly the same way as they did before coronavirus…The only difference is that security guards try to stop anyone taking pictures which would never have happened before.

Bat eating and wet markets must be stopped to prevent coronavirus

The coronavirus pandemic is en route to impose possibly the worst recession in the U.S. and in the global economy since the Great Depression in 1929.

The U.S. stocks have recovered through aggressive fiscal policies, but the threat to manufacturing, retail, and other major industries across the U.S., Europe, and even China place the world at risk of a prolonged economic downturn.

To prevent another coronavirus outbreak from occurring in the future, it is critical to eliminate practices that are suspected to have led to the virus outbreak.

Bat guano collectors fill bag outside of a bat cave at Wat Khao Chong Phran in Ratchaburi, Thailand March 14, 2020. | Source: REUTERS/Juarawee Kittisilpa

As CCN.com reported, in 2007, Clinical Microbiology Reviews Journal released a study detailing the possibility of a SARS-like epidemic reemerging in the future as a result of the viruses contained in bats.

The study read:

The presence of a large reservoir of SARS-CoV-like viruses in horseshoe bats, together with the culture of eating exotic mammals in southern China, is a time bomb. The possibility of the reemergence of SARS and other novel viruses from animals or laboratories and therefore the need for preparedness should not be ignored.

Some countries like South Korea, China, and Singapore have seen a flattening of the curve of new coronavirus cases, and scientists say that the peak of the outbreak has been passed.

But, a steady number of coronavirus patients are still being reported, and patients that previously tested negative and were discharged from hospitals are beginning to test positive once again.

At least until the U.S. and Europe pass the peak of coronavirus and the immense pressure on medical centers is alleviated, all of the possible precautionary measures have to be taken.

The reported reopening of wet markets in China at this time, which is being heavily criticized by analysts, has the potential to fuel a new virus outbreak.

Is there a solution?

The difficulty governments have faced in regions like Thailand and some parts of China is that thousands of individuals depend on capturing bats and their guano to be sold to farmers as fertilizers as their livelihood.

To regions that have a culture of consuming and capturing bats, legally enforcing counteractive measures to prevent a virus outbreak is crucial. There are many options that could allow the authorities to enforce it without leaving thousands unemployed, such as government-supported work programs.

This article was edited by Samburaj Das.

Last modified: March 31, 2020 10:04 AM

Joseph Young @iamjosephyoung

Financial analyst based in Seoul, South Korea. Contributing regularly to CCN and Forbes. I have covered the stock market and bitcoin since 2013.

More of: ChinaCoronavirus
Show comments