Chief Executive Carrie Lam complained on Wednesday that the public are not working with her administration in tackling the pandemic, as she suggested that getting a Covid vaccine, or a higher take-up rate in society, could become a prerequisite for the relaxation of social distancing measures.
The CE said the government was considering offering "incentives" to people to sign up for Covid jabs, with looser pandemic rules and a resumption of cross-border travel possible for those who are inoculated.
Lam told lawmakers that experts have tried their best to be transparent about the vaccination programme, saying they have held meetings and provided explanations through the media regarding incidents involving people who had received jabs.
She said the public's cooperation with the authorities is also important.
"If we require people to go for compulsory testing, they won't do it, and now we encourage people to take the vaccines, people don't do that," the CE complained.
"Every time there's an outbreak, we have to do a large amount of work to suppress the outbreak, but we're still not able to achieve zero infections," she added.
If the pandemic is not brought under control, it will be difficult to revive the economy, the CE warned, adding that her administration is "very worried" about the SAR's unemployment rate recently hitting 7.2 percent – the highest since 2004.