Hong Kong announced Friday it will end mandatory hotel quarantines, lifting some of the world’s toughest travel restrictions that have shattered the economy and left the financial hub internationally isolated.
The long-awaited move will be a relief to residents and businesses who have demanded the Asian business hub rejoin the rest of the world in continuing to travel unhindered and coexist with the coronavirus.
In the past two-and-a-half years, Hong Kong has adhered to China’s version of China’s strict zero-Covid rules, deepening the crisis of intellectual departures, while rival business hubs have reopened.
The end of the mandatory quarantine in Hong Kong would leave mainland China as the only major economy still undergoing a lengthy quarantine for international arrivals.
Hong Kong Chief Executive John Lee said the mandatory three-day quarantine at hotels would currently be lifted for those arriving in Hong Kong from overseas and Taiwan. Travelers must undergo a PCR test upon arrival and will not be able to visit restaurants and bars within the first three days under a system that authorities call “0+3”. “Under this arrangement, the hotel quarantine system will be lifted,” Lee told reporters. [ka/uh]