Hongkongers stranded in virus-stricken Wuhan will have to wait at least another two days before they find out the details of an evacuation plan being drawn up by the government.
A spokesman for the Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Bureau said on Wednesday that those in the virus-hit mainland city will be given until 6pm on Friday to register their interest in taking free chartered flights being arranged.
He said only after calculating the numbers, will officials decide how many flights to arrange.
Those who haven’t contacted the government for help already can register their details by calling a hotline on (+852) 1868 or sending an email to email@example.com.
The spokesman said the Economic and Trade Office in Wuhan will arrange transport to the airport.
Officials have said that as well as any SAR resident trapped in Wuhan, others across Hubei province could be brought back in the first evacuation stage if they have special needs, such as pregnant women and those with underlying illnesses.
Around 530 Hong Kong residents are in Wuhan, while about 2,400 are scattered across other cities in the province – the epicentre of the mainland's coronavirus outbreak.
The SAR government has been criticised for not acting fast enough to evacuate its residents after the province imposed a lockdown to stop the outbreak from spreading further. Transport to and from Hubei has been cut off since the end of January.