Hong Kong, July 13 A scorching heatwave in China has forced a major manufacturing region to appeal to businesses and households to use less power, while fear of crop failure is sending pork prices soaring, media reports said.
Dozens of cities have been experiencing record-high temperatures at a time when the economy is still trying to recover from bruising Covid-related lockdowns, CNN reported.
The heatwave also comes as consumer inflation hit a 23-month high, mainly driven by rising food prices.
As many as 84 cities across the country on Wednesday issued their highest-level red alert warnings — which means temperatures are expected to reach over 40-degree Celsius in the coming 24 hours — according to the National Meteorological Administration.
Shanghai had reported 40-degree Celsius on Sunday for the first time this year, CNN reported.
The heatwave has pushed electricity demand to extreme levels in many regions as people turn up the air conditioning machines.
On Tuesday, the Zhejiang province — an export and manufacturing powerhouse on the east coast — urged its 65 million residents and businesses to save power.
“In order to ensure electricity supply for residents and companies, we call for joint action by the whole of society to save electricity,” the province’s energy bureau and the State Grid said in a joint statement.
Zhejiang’s energy bureau has also rationed supply of power for some energy-intensive firms, such as polyester producers and textile printing and dying companies in the cities of Hangzhou, Shaoxing, and Haining, according to analysts from several Chinese brokerage firms, CNN reported.