Taipei, May 26 (CNA) Following a surge in domestically transmitted COVID-19 cases, Taiwan dropped out of the top 10 resilience list released by Bloomberg on Tuesday.
The latest Bloomberg COVID Resilience Ranking showed that Taiwan fell from its previous fifth position to 15th, while neighboring Japan also dropped out of the top 10 list to 14th place from the previous seventh.
"Lauded for its handling of the pathogen, the Asia-Pacific region accounted for all seven of the biggest declines this month in the measure of the best and worst places to be in the pandemic," Bloomberg said.
"Taiwan and Japan dropped out of the top 10 amid sluggish inoculation drives and resurgent cases, while some of the world's fiercest outbreaks were in Southeast and South Asia," Bloomberg added.
According to Bloomberg, the COVID Resilience Ranking uses a wide range of factors, from mortality and testing rates to vaccine access and freedom of movement, to evaluate where the pandemic is being handled most effectively and with the least social and economic disruption.
On May 19 Taiwan raised the COVID-19 alert nationwide to Level 3 just days after the virus infection measures were issued on May 15 for Taipei and New Taipei, two infection hot spots in the northern part of the country for the indigenous virus spread.
Under Taiwan's four-tier alert system, a Level 3 alert means that people are now required to wear masks at all times when they leave their homes, indoor gatherings of more than five people are not allowed, and outdoor gatherings are limited to 10 people.
A Level 3 alert, which has been imposed in Taiwan for the first time, is only one stop short of a lockdown.
On Wednesday, Taiwan reported 633 domestic COVID-19 cases. The new cases bring the total number in the country to 6,091 since the outbreak began in early 2020, of which over 4,500 are locally transmitted infections reported since May 15.
Taiwan, with a population of more than 23 million, took delivery of 400,000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine on May 19, the second batch Taiwan has received from the global vaccine-sharing program COVAX.
Prior to the May 19 shipment, Taiwan had taken delivery of 117,000 doses purchased directly from AstraZeneca and 199,200 doses of the same brand supplied through COVAX.
"After infections crept back despite stringent border defenses, Singapore and Taiwan risk becoming stuck in new cycles of lockdown restrictions as they react aggressively to flareups that are mere fractions of those still being seen in some Western countries that are already starting to reopen," Bloomberg said, referring to the two economies' zero tolerance for the disease.
For Singapore, its post on the Bloomberg resilience ranking fell one notch to 2nd on the latest ranking.
Like Taiwan and Singapore, Bloomberg said Australia (No. 3 in the ranking), China (No. 9) and Hong Kong (No.10) has adopted zero tolerance for the disease.
According to the latest ranking, the United Kingdom and the United States, which have launched large scale vaccination programs, saw their listings rising to 11 and 13, respectively, up seven and four notches.
New Zealand took the top spot on the Bloomberg resilience ranking, up one notch.
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