Alibaba (NYSE:BABA) shares climbed more than 3% in pre-market trading Thursday and highlighted a slate of gains among Chinese Internet stocks that rallied in the wake of Beijing easing back on its "Zero-COVID" policy.
China began implementing 10 changes to its COVID-19 protocols on Wednesday that included ending citywide lockdowns, requiring pharmacies to remain open and not close at will, and expanding efforts to vaccinate elderly citizens. The policy changes come following multiple protests around China over its hardcore anti-COVID efforts that have included "closed loop" environments around some of the country's massive tech-manufacturing plants such as that of Apple's (NASDAQ:AAPL) iPhone-making partner, Foxconn.
On Thursday, Foxconn said it was scrapping its "closed loop" practices, which included restricting workers to their company living quarters and factory areas, at its facility in Zhengzhou, China.
Along with Alibaba (BABA), notable gains came from Baidu (BIDU), up more than 4%; NetEase (NTES), which rose 4.5%; Pinduoduo (PDD), which edged up by 3%; Tencent Holdings (OTCPK:TCEHY), Weibo (WB), up by almost 5%; JD.com (NASDAQ:JD), which rose more than 2%, and Bilibili (NASDAQ:BILI), up by almost 9%.
Thursday's COVID-affiliated gains were on the heels of a decline in many Chinese tech stocks that was tied to caution resulting from a report that showed shrinking imports and exports in China during November.