Corona pandemic: Hong Kong ends hotel quarantine |

Status: 09/23/2022 4:20 p.m

After more than two years, Hong Kong is abolishing the mandatory hotel quarantine for travelers. The city is thus lifting one of the strictest pandemic rules in the world.

By Eva Lamby-Schmitt, ARD Studio Shanghai

Arrivals from abroad are no longer required to be in hotel quarantine in Hong Kong. Instead of going to a hotel, arriving travelers will have to watch themselves at home from Monday. After three days, if the test result is negative, they are allowed to visit restaurants and bars again. A rapid corona test is now sufficient before departure for Hong Kong; a PCR test is no longer required.

The Hong Kong government was recently under strong pressure from health and economic experts to open up the Chinese special administrative region to the outside world. The main aim is to prevent Hong Kong from losing further to its competitors. Only yesterday Hong Kong was replaced by Singapore as the most important Asian financial center in an internationally recognized ranking.

Central government put pressure on

Pressure in the other direction to keep the measures in place has been coming from the communist central government in Beijing since the pandemic began. Hong Kong had followed mainland China’s zero-Covid policy throughout the corona pandemic, with hotel quarantines sometimes lasting weeks.

However, strict lockdowns, such as those implemented in mainland China for the smallest outbreaks in cities with over a million inhabitants, were not possible in Hong Kong due to the narrow infrastructure. Seven million people live there in a very small space. The spread of the omicron variant of the coronavirus could not be prevented in Hong Kong.

In order to avoid cases from Hong Kong to mainland China, the central government in Beijing keeps the borders largely closed. Most recently, Hong Kong reported almost 6,000 corona infections a day.

Hong Kong ends hotel quarantine

Eva Lamby-Schmitt, ARD Shanghai, September 23, 2022 at 3:47 p.m

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