Beijing, March 27 -- China on Thursday reported a second consecutive day of no new domestic coronavirus cases as the country's epidemic epicentre Hubei province opened its sealed borders after weeks, allowing hundreds of people to step out for the first time in several weeks.

However, imported Covid-19 cases rose sharply on Wednesday, fuelling fears of a second infection wave across China riding on overseas returnees.

A total of 67 new cases were reported as of Wednesday, up from 47 a day earlier, all of which were from outside, China's national health commission (NHS) said on Thursday. It took the total number of imported cases to 541 on the mainland.

The total number of cases now stands at 81,285 while the NHC reported a total of 3,287...