The IIHF has confirmed that China will remain in Group A for the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing in February.
China will play against Canada, USA and Germany in the team's first Olympic appearance, granted to them as hosts of the Winter Games. China is currently ranked 32nd in the IIHF rankings, most recently playing in the Division IIA event in 2019 – the fourth-highest IIHF event. China avoided relegation with a 4-0 shutout over Belgium in the final game, sending the Belgians to Division IIB.
The decision was originally made in 2018 to allow the Chinese men’s national team a spot in the tournament. The topic of competitiveness was brought back into the limelight with the NHL's expected participation in 2022 again later this year, with new IIHF president Luc Tardif saying in early November that China would participate. The IIHF used a two-game stand against KHL teams later that month to determine the team's status while having China play with more national team players on Kunlun Red Star The IIHF later met again to determine the team's status, with participation being confirmed on Tuesday.
It's still unclear what the roster will look like in Beijing, but much of Kunlun Red Star has met the requirements to represent the team in Olympic competition.