Manpower shortage holds back bar revival: Zeman - RTHK
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Manpower shortage holds back bar revival: Zeman

2022-05-19 HKT 09:20
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  • Manpower shortage holds back bar revival: Zeman
Nightlife tycoon Allan Zeman on Thursday welcomed the reopening of venues such as bars in the latest round of easing of social distancing measures, but cautioned that the industry was facing a shortage of personnel after months of closures.

Speaking on RTHK's Hong Kong Today programme, Zeman said allowing bars to reopen made it a happy day for the SAR. Zeman, who heads the Lan Kwai Fong Group, said restaurants had reported an increase in bookings as they are now allowed to open until midnight.

"Bars have been closed since January. It's a long time," he told RTHK's Janice Wong. "So, obviously people could not wait for their jobs to come back and so they've left the industry. It's not easy to attract new staff. It'll just take a few months at least to work through the system."

As well as bars, Thursday sees karaoke clubs and mahjong parlours allowed to reopen. They'll have to close at 2am.

The easing will also see people allowed to remove their masks when exercising indoors in gyms and sports halls that meet specific ventilation requirements. However, gym operators have said that few venues will be able to make the required changes.

Officials have cautioned that the easing of restrictions may lead to an increase in Covid cases. They've urged people to get a third vaccine dose, which will be required to enter many venues under the vaccine pass system from May 31.