Beijing colour-codes buildings based on how many staff members have been vaccinated

Ben Farmer
·2 min read
A man walks past a colour-coded sign (in blue) on the door of a printing business which indicates the vaccination rate of staff inside is between 40 and 80 percent - LEO RAMIREZ /AFP
A man walks past a colour-coded sign (in blue) on the door of a printing business which indicates the vaccination rate of staff inside is between 40 and 80 percent - LEO RAMIREZ /AFP

China's capital is colour-coding office blocks to show how many workers have been vaccinated.

The scheme inside Beijing's financial district is aimed at accelerating the city's vaccine roll out amid intensifying government pressure to hit jab targets.

Buildings where 80 per cent of more of workers have been given their jabs will be awarded a green circular sign, followed by a yellow sign for those between 40 per cent and 80 per cent and a red sign for those below that.

China has set an ambitious target to vaccinate two-fifths of its total population, or some 560 million people by the end of June.

That target has put party officials under growing pressure to think of ways to encourage people to get their injections.

While no penalties or specific consequences have been announced for low vaccination rates, many buildings have organized on-site immunisation drives to make it easier for workers to get their shots, Bloomberg reported.

Tens of millions of workers at state-owned enterprises, party members, and college students are required to get jabs unless they provide a medical reason.

A health worker talks to at-risk people following a Covid-19 coronavirus cluster traced to entertainment venues, before administering the CoronaVac vaccine - MLADEN ANTONOV /AFP
A health worker talks to at-risk people following a Covid-19 coronavirus cluster traced to entertainment venues, before administering the CoronaVac vaccine - MLADEN ANTONOV /AFP

Incentives including free food, vouchers, and small gifts have all been offered to drum up volunteers.

Recent figures show the push is closing in on the required rate of 5 million people per day to hit the target. The number of shots given has been around 4.5 million each day for the past week.

China's vast population of more than 1.4 billion people means that even at that rate of injections, it remains far down the rankings of vaccinated countries. The country has administered around 10 doses per 100 people, compared with 50 in American and 54 in the UK.

The colour-coded office signs build on a smartphone app system introduced last year requiring people to show a green code, indicating they are at low risk of having been exposed to Covid-19, before being permitted to enter almost all public venues, including restaurants, shops, and hotels.

The assessment comes from apps designed by China’s two biggest internet companies that pull personal data from phone carriers and government departments.