Mainland China reported a rise in new confirmed coronavirus cases, reversing four days of declines.
The increase has been put down to an uptick in infections involving travellers arriving from overseas.
Mainland China had 48 new cases on Monday, the National Health Commission said in a statement, up from 31 new infections a day earlier.
All of the 48 cases were imported, bringing the total number of imported cases in China to 771 as of Monday.
There was no reported new case of local infection.
Mainland China has reported a rise in coronavirus cases after four days of decline
While locally transmitted infections in China have mostly declined, authorities are concerned about cases involving travellers who have caught the virus abroad.
As a result, it has seen them stepping up health screening and quarantine protocols and even reducing the number of international flights and barring entry to most foreigners.
Of the new imported cases reported on Monday, 10 were in northern China’s Inner Mongolia region involving travellers whose flights were diverted from Beijing to Hohhot, Inner Mongolia’s capital city, in recent days, according to state media.
People wearing masks cross a street during work rush hour, as businesses start returning to their normal routine
Shanghai reported 11 new imported cases, comprising mainly Chinese nationals returning from abroad, while Beijing reported three new imported infections.
The city of Wuhan, capital of central Hubei province and epicentre of the outbreak in China, reported no new infections for the seventh straight day.
As of Monday, the total number of infections reported in mainland China stood at 81,518 and the death toll at 3,305.
The new cases have been put down to travelers arriving in the country
(Image: JUSTIN LANE/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock)
The Chinese city of Wuhan, where the outbreak began, this week re-opened tube trains and long-distance train services in another step towards ending restrictions that confined millions to their homes for months.
Passengers in Wuhan in the central province of Hubei had to wear masks and be checked for fever after service resumed on Saturday, the official Xinhua News Agency reported.
It said signs were posted telling passengers to sit with empty seats between them.
The number of new infections has fallen sharply in the mainland from the peak in February.
The government is now exhorting businesses and factories to reopen for business as it rolls out various fiscal and monetary stimulus to drive a recovery from what many now expect to be an outright economic contraction in January-March.