The Hong Kong Association of Athletics Affiliates on Tuesday appeared to reverse its decision to cancel the next Hong Kong Marathon, saying it could be held in February next year.
On Friday the association said the event, originally planned for November, would not go ahead because the government was yet to give its approval and there was not enough time to make the necessary preparations.
There had already been suggestions that the marathon could be pushed back to February and on Tuesday the association said that following discussions over the last few days, it has received the government's full support to plan to hold the event on February 12.
"The organiser will strictly adhere to and implement all necessary anti-pandemic measures. It will also work closely with the relevant government departments for appropriate preparation work, allowing all runners, staff, and the general public to participate in this annual sports event in a healthy and safe manner," a statement read.
Sports Commissioner Yeung Tak-keung said 25,000 participants would be allowed to take part in the marathon, as proposed earlier by organisers.
"Because the number of participants is quite large, it takes time for the relevant government departments to consider the proposal and advise on the necessary precautionary measures," Yeung said, as he explained why approval for the event has not yet been granted.
Earlier in the day, Chief Executive John Lee said he hoped the marathon could still be held, adding that the government will do its best to ensure large-scale events can take place.
"Of course we will be doing all our best so that we will be having all these events to happen in Hong Kong because this is what everybody wants to see, and it will create a lot of economic gains for Hong Kong as well," he said.
"Our position is very clear. We're very supportive and we want both sides to work towards the goal of making it happen, so we will have to openly and directly talk to each other so as to try a good solution for Hong Kong."
Last updated: 2022-09-20 HKT 17:20