A new report documented evidence that the coronavirus has been spreading in Wuhan as early as May 2019 and that the Chinese government knew about it.
The report — titled "Procuring for a Pandemic: An Assessment of Hubei Province PCR Procurement Contracts" — shows that the government in China was buying up testing related to the coronavirus much earlier than the officially recognized beginning of the pandemic.
The PCR-related procurement contracts are called the "gold standard" of the coronavirus testing, suggesting that China knew there was an outbreak of the coronavirus as early as May 2019.
"An initial view of the data depicts the dramatic increase of PCR procurement contracts in 2019," the report said. "The increase was present in both the contract total value and the number of contracts."
The report said that institutional spending on the PCR, or Polymerase Chain Reaction, contracts was greater in 2019 than in the two previous years combined.
"The full inventory of this catastrophe is still being compiled," wrote Robert Potter, one of the authors of the report.
"What is clear is that investigating the coverup of the virus still has some distance to go before it is fully understood," he added. "The data presented here gives us a strong indication that the outbreak started prior to December 2019, meaning the information gap and window for the emergence of the virus is larger than when we started this project."
The new evidence may corroborate the lab-leak theory proposed by many who believe the pandemic originated from a laboratory in Wuhan rather than from a natural source, as the Chinese government has claimed.
Experts and the media initially dismissed the lab-leak theory as another partisan conspiracy theory, but the tide turned toward the possibility of an artificial source for the pandemic after more evidence was discovered and documented by online sleuths.
In July, World Health Organization Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus admitted that the organization dismissed the possibility of a lab leak far too prematurely. He also said that the investigation into the sources of the pandemic were stymied by efforts from the Chinese government to withhold important documents and information related to the probe.
In June, Chinese state media quoted a senior epidemiologist calling for the United States to be investigated as the possible origin of the coronavirus.
"All bio-weapons related subjects that the country has should be subject to scrutiny," said Zeng Guang.
Here's more about the lab-leak theory:
Covid-19 patient zero may have worked at a lab in Wuhan, China www.youtube.com