In response to a decrease in the number of local cases since the height of the epidemic, Hong Kong said on Sunday that it would reduce the ban on airlines that are found to have transported three or more passengers who test positive for COVID-19 upon arrival.
The government said in a statement that the restriction on particular airline routes would be lowered to seven days starting on Friday as part of a continuous “flight suspension mechanism.”
A restriction on flights from nine nations — Canada, India, Pakistan, Nepal, the United Kingdom, the United States, France, Australia and the Philippines – was withdrawn last week after the government said it would be lifted on April 1 if a ban on flights from those countries was lifted.
Any flight on which there is at least one positive test and at least one incidence of non-compliance with pre-departure testing will be grounded for seven days, and the airline will be barred from flying the route for the same period.
With 8,037 new COVID-19 infections and 151 fatalities on Sunday, Hong Kong recorded less than 10,000 new COVID-19 infections for the second day in a row. The city’s newest wave of illnesses is continuing to subside.
Starting on April 21, the financial center will scale down its social distance policies in stages, allowing restaurant eating after 6 p.m. with tables of four individuals instead of the existing two-person limit in effect.
Following a drop in retail sales for the first time in 12 months in February and a slowdown in export growth, Financial Secretary Paul Chan predicted that Hong Kong’s economy would contract during the first quarter, ending a four-quarter recovery streak. Chan made the announcement on his personal blog.
Businesses and the city’s economy are suffering as a result of extensive closures, which have occurred since the government implemented strict social distancing restrictions in January in response to a huge increase in the Omicron variety.
While the former British colony has officially adhered to a “dynamic zero” coronavirus policy, which is identical to that of mainland China and attempts to contain all outbreaks, it has begun to pivot to mitigation techniques as the number of fatalities has risen dramatically.