Hong Kong to extend mandatory quarantine for inbound travellers from Chinese mainland

HONG KONG (XINHUA) – China’s Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) will extend mandatory quarantine for all inbound travellers from the Chinese mainland that will expire on May 7 for another one month to June 7 amid the COVID-19 epidemic.

At a press conference held yesterday afternoon, HKSAR government Secretary for Food and Health Sophia Chan announced the extension, saying that persons such as cross-boundary students including students at kindergartens, primary and secondary schools or relevant staff working for students, and those who benefit Hong Kong’s economy, or provide professional services will be exempted from the mandatory quarantine.

Starting from February 8, Hong Kong has been requiring all travellers entering Hong Kong from the Chinese mainland, including both Hong Kong residents and non-Hong Kong residents, to undergo a mandatory quarantine for 14 days. Persons such as drivers of cross-boundary goods delivery vehicles, crew members of arriving passenger and cargo planes, and crew members of cargo ships and fishing boats, have been exempted from the mandatory quarantine.

Chan said the mainland has flattened the curve on the COVID-19 epidemic, but Hong Kong needs to prevent the spread of a possible second round of infection caused by cross-boundary traffic and imported cases from overseas.

If the epidemic is controlled well, the HKSAR government will announce as of whether to cancel the quarantine for arrivals from the mainland and China’s Macao Special Administrative Region after discussion, Chan said.

Stranded passengers at Hong Kong International Airport. PHOTO: XINHUA