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Sydney’s Chinatown hops back into business for Year of the Rabbit
SUNDAY, JANUARY 22, 2023
Sydney’s Chinatown hopped back into business on Saturday to welcome in the Lunar New Year dedicated to the rabbit, with locals and tourists taking to the streets after years of on-off Covid-19 lockdowns.
As a dance troupe performed the iconic lion dance, visitors photographed rabbit-inspired installations and embraced the spirit of the Lunar New Year.
Businesses like Sharetea in the heart of Chinatown were pleased with Covid-induced lockdowns coming to an end and thousands of people out to celebrate.
“It’s very busy, obviously after two years of Covid and right now we can actually can celebrate an actual Lunar New Year,” Sharetea employee Jayzer Nguyen told Reuters from the store.
Nguyen added that with borders open with the rest of the world it would be good for business.
“There are many and many Chinese people going out and not only Chinese people but also other Asian people like Vietnamese, and Indonesian. And it’s like a breakthrough for the business,” he said adding that in the new year, he would hope the business expands and he continues to sell more tea.
Covid-19 restrictions had hampered Lunar New Year festivities since 2020 but Sydneysider Eric Kha said that all the hustle and liveliness is how Chinatown should be.
“It feels great. It feels like the city is back to normal, lively again just like pre-covid and this is how it’s supposed to be for Chinatown,” he told Reuters.
Some Chinese students studying in Sydney have different views of the situation back home.
Dong Shu Lin said the situation in China was stable and with his family and friends having had Covid already he was not worried about the pandemic in China, adding it was similar to Sydney. While Crystal Li is still worried for her family back home as she can’t return during the festive season.
Russians flock to see Chinese New Year celebration in Moscow
Hundreds of Muscovites visited on Saturday (January 21) Chinese Lunar New Year celebration in the Russian capital.
The event was staged at a famous VDNKH (Exhibition of Economic Achievements) exhibition centre, known for its Soviet-style surroundings.
Despite the fact that the Chinese population in Moscow is relatively small, interest in China and Chinese culture is on the rise in Russia. Last week the Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov said that the relations between the two countries were as good as ever.
The interest in China comes at a time when the relations between Russia and the West hit the lowest point over what Russia calls a “Special Military Operation in Ukraine.”