CE calls for caution ahead of eased Covid rules - RTHK
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CE calls for caution ahead of eased Covid rules

2022-05-17 HKT 11:13
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  • CE calls for caution ahead of eased Covid rules
Chief Executive Carrie Lam says Hong Kong will relax more social distancing measures as planned on Thursday, but warns that caution is required because the Covid situation has now "reached a stalemate".

Speaking ahead of her weekly Executive Council meeting on Tuesday, Lam said the territory has long passed the peak of the fifth Covid wave, but daily infections are still in the 200 to 300 range.

She said there are still transmission risks, after health authorities reported several emerging clusters.

Despite that, the CE said premises that are currently closed, including bars, nightclubs and karaoke lounges can reopen as scheduled on May 19.

Dine-in services at restaurants can be extended to midnight, and eating and drinking will be allowed in cinemas.

People will also no longer be required to wear masks when they exercise in indoor sports premises and well-ventilated gyms.

Lam, however, urged people to remain cautious and called on the public to get their third dose of vaccine before the end of the month to continue to be able to access public areas under the government's vaccine pass.

"Vaccination remains the most effective way to prevent serious illness arising from Covid-19 infection. If we could keep this situation, then we will not be overburdening the Hong Kong public hospitals, and that has always been one of the primary objectives of our anti-epidemic work in Hong Kong," she said.

"We are not suddenly requiring Hong Kong people to take the third dose before you could enter restaurants, gyms and other venues, we have been telling people and announcing well in advance the third-dose requirement under the vaccine pass."

She also admitted that more incentives are needed to encourage people get their third dose, as only half of the eligible population have been triple-jabbed.