Health code for cross border travel on the way - RTHK
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Health code for cross border travel on the way

2020-08-21 HKT 17:18
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  • Health code for cross border travel on the way
Chief Executive Carrie Lam said on Friday that the government would unveil a health code plan to enable cross border travel as soon the pandemic situation in Hong Kong stabilises.

But Lam ruled out the possibility of rolling out a health code in Hong Kong specifically for restaurants and shops, saying such a plan would be “unfeasible”. Some pro-Beijing parties had called for such a code be implemented here.

"The health code that we have been working on so far, and had discussions with Guangdong and Macau, is for travelling. Similarly that same health code will be used for travelling to overseas countries once we have the travel bubble in place with other countries," she said.

"It is not a sort of health code for access to local institutions or catering, or things like that, it’s just not practicable to have a health code in Hong Kong for that purpose," the Chief Executive said.

Those who sign up for the planned code will have to take a coronavirus test from a recognised medical facility or lab and provide information to verify their identities, such as travel document details and phone numbers.

They can then apply to the Guangdong or Macau authorities for a digital certificate confirming the negative test results so they can be exempted from quarantine restrictions when they travel there.

Secretary for Innovation and Technology Alfred Sit said a similar “health code” system is already being used by residents in Macau and Guangdong.

The authorities in these two places have been looking at ways to relax cross border travel to Hong Kong since May, he added.

Sit dismissed privacy concerns surrounding the scheme, saying the system will not have any tracking function. Advice of the privacy commissioner will be sought in this matter, he said.