A helicopter flies over the Victoria Habour, Hong Kong on Jan 2, 2023. (PHOTO / CHINADAILYHK.COM)
HONG KONG – The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region government is planning to launch a major promotion exercise in February to attract visitors and businesses to the city, the chief executive announced on Tuesday, saying that he expects the tourism industry to bounce back following the border resumption of quarantine-free ravel with the mainland.
“We will not look at the effect of the reopening in one or two days only, but rather the long-term benefits,” John Lee Ka-chiu said ahead of the weekly Executive Council meeting.
Stressing that the effect of the border reopening with the mainland was positive, he said: “The border reopening symbolizes reunion between the mainland and the city. It was also a boost for Hong Kong’s economy.”
As the Chinese New Year draws closer, people would make arrangements for holiday activities and the inflow and outflow between the mainland and the city will be prominent, said the CE.
More people will come to Hong Kong and the tourism and retail industry will prosper, and the city’s role as a connector between the mainland and the rest of the world will also be enhanced to attract global talents, Chief Executive John Lee Ka-chiu said
Cross-border travel was the wish of many residents for reunion and normal daily activities, he said adding that the government had assessed the situation and made appropriate quota for this to ensure smooth and orderly operations in various border checkpoints.
More people will come to Hong Kong and the tourism and retail industry will prosper, and the city’s role as a connector between the mainland and the rest of the world will also be enhanced to attract global talents, he said.
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Regarding various standards of CT values in the city and the mainland, the chief executive said the Health Bureau was working with local laboratories to standardize nucleic acid testing reports.
The government will maintain communication with the mainland authorities and review the testing arrangements for those aged under 3, as local children below the age of 3 were required to present negative result nucleic acid testing conducted within 48 hours prior to the journey to the mainland, while those coming to the SAR are exempt.
Starting from Tuesday, members of the public can bring young children aged under 3 to community testing centers to collect throat swab specimen from the young children for undergoing self-paid nucleic acid tests.
Chief Executive John Lee Ka-chiu holds a press conference at the Central Government Office, Hong Kong, Jan 5, 2023. (CALVIN NG / CHINADAILY)
Regarding the resumption of the high-speed rail link service on Jan 15, he said the government is working hard to this end, with various parties preparing for this, including personnel arrangements and trainings in the checkpoints and train operation.
Talking on the city’s pandemic policy, Lee said the government will closely monitor relevant data and pay attention to the rate of serious illnesses and hospitalization, while the health authorities will be on their guard against any new COVID-19 variants.
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One the supply of medicine, the chief executive stressed that the city had sufficient stocks of medicine for pain and fever. The government will formulate feasible measures with pharmaceutical companies to impose “self-disciplinary limits” on certain types of medicine and will not rule out legislation, he added.