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Singapore-Hong Kong journey bubble postponed as Hong Kong’s coronavirus instances rise

Singapore-Hong Kong journey bubble postponed as Hong Kong’s coronavirus instances rise

Singapore Airlines crew members at Changi International Airport in Singapore on Oct. 24, 2020.

Roslan Rahman | AFP | Getty Images

SINGAPORE — Singapore and Hong Kong have postponed their air journey bubble preparations for 2 weeks, based on Hong Kong’s secretary for commerce and financial growth.

The announcement comes simply hours after Singapore stated the settlement, which was set to take effect on Sunday, would go forward as deliberate regardless of an increase in new coronavirus instances in Hong Kong.

“So doing is necessary to avoid any inconvenience caused by the abrupt changes of the scheme to passengers, particularly those (who) need to return back to Hong Kong,” stated Edward Yau.

The state of affairs will probably be reviewed and each side will hold one another knowledgeable of additional developments, he added, saying they’ll make an announcement in December concerning the formal launching of the scheme.

Earlier Saturday, the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore announced that each one arriving passengers from Hong Kong can be required to take a further Covid-19 Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) check upon arrival. They would additionally have to self-isolate of their place of residence — be it a lodge or dwelling — as they await the outcomes which is able to take about six to eight hours, the aviation authority stated.

To be clear, all passengers from Hong Kong below the air journey bubble settlement would have already been required to take a pre-departure Covid-19 PCR check and acquire a unfavorable check consequence earlier than departing for Singapore.

The initial air travel bubble agreement announced on Nov. 11 didn’t require any isolation of passengers from Hong Kong upon arrival. It was resulting from begin on Nov. 22 with a single flight each day into every metropolis, restricted to a most of 200 passengers per flight. The variety of flights will enhance provided that the unfold of Covid-19 in each cities stays below management.

Hong Kong’s ‘new wave’

Hong Kong reported Friday that the number of new daily cases rose to 26, and most of them had been native infections. The metropolis reportedly introduced one other 43 instances on Saturday.

“We have probably entered into a new wave of cases,” town’s Secretary for Food and Health Sophia Chan stated in a press briefing on Friday, citing specialists from the Centre for Health Protection.

She stated the state of affairs was “severe” and urged residents to cease all pointless gatherings.

The authorities met late Friday to finalize different contingency measures aimed toward stemming the unfold of the virus, and won’t rule out extra stringent restrictions, Chief Executive Carrie Lam said in a Facebook post.

Hong Kong imposed new restrictions on Saturday, together with the banning of golf equipment and celebration rooms, in addition to prohibiting stay performances and dancing in bars and pubs. The authorities introduced earlier that major faculties will probably be suspended for 2 weeks from Monday.

The Singapore and Hong Kong well being authorities are in shut contact and monitoring the state of affairs.

Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore

Travel authorities from each side have all the time stated the deal will probably be suspended if the Covid-19 state of affairs in both metropolis deteriorates.

Singapore’s aviation authority reiterated on Saturday that the air journey bubble “will be suspended if the seven-day moving average of unlinked cases exceeds five per day.”

“The figure for Hong Kong is currently at 2.14,” CAAS stated. “The threshold will be exceeded if there are more than 22 unlinked cases in Hong Kong over the next three days. This will trigger a two-day notice period, after which suspension will come into effect.”

“The Singapore and Hong Kong health authorities are in close contact and monitoring the situation,” the aviation authority stated.

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