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China urges boost in production of virus-fighting protective gear

Beijing promises to buy surplus equipment once crisis abates

A mask production line in Shanghai. China boasts capacity to produce 20 million medical masks daily, but output was disrupted by the Lunar New Year holiday.   © Reuters

BEIJING -- China is offering support to companies that invest in equipment to increase output of medical supplies needed to combat the deadly coronavirus epidemic.

State officials are encouraging manufacturers of masks and similar products to purchase additional equipment to resolve a supply shortage. The government will buy back the extra equipment later if there is an early resolution to the crisis.

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