Stock image illustrating Chinese shipping container being pummeled by Covid. Credit: Mike Mareen/Adobe Stock

China’s stringent rules to curb Covid-19 are about to unleash another wave of summer chaos on supply chains between Asia, the United States, and Europe.

Beijing’s zero-tolerance approach amid an escalating virus outbreak brings the pandemic full-circle, more than two years after its emergence in Wuhan up-ended the global economy. Shipping congestion at Chinese ports, combined with Russia’s war in Ukraine, risks a one-two punch that threatens to derail the recovery, already buffeted by inflation pressures and headwinds to growth.

Even if the virus is reined in, the disruptions will ripple globally—and extend through the year—as bunched-up cargo vessels start sailing again.

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