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Hong Kong Today
Hong Kong Today
RTHK's morning news programme. Weekdays 6:30 - 8:00
Janice Wong and Samantha Butler


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Selected audio segments:
Govt expands Covid wage subsidy scheme  Listenfacebook
The government is relaxing the criteria for its pandemic wage subsidy - the employment support scheme. Last month, officials proposed a new round of the subsidy scheme to help small and medium-sized firms keep workers who earn less than $30,000 a month, amid the worst surge of Covid-19 that Hong Kong has seen. But now big companies and businesses can also benefit, including supermarkets, as Timmy Sung reports:
SME chair says shuttered businesses should have higher subsidy  Listenfacebook
The chairman of the Hong Kong Small and Medium Enterprises Association, Danny Lau, has welcomed changes to the government's latest round of pandemic wage support, saying more workers will benefit. Lau said the dropping of the salary cap meant more people were eligible, but he was disappointed that the monthly subsidy was $1,000 less than previously announced. He told Samantha Butler that more support should be offered to businesses that were forced to shut because of anti-epidemic restrictions:
Experts recommend fourth jab for 60+  Listenfacebook
Health experts are recommending that people aged 60 and above be allowed to get a fourth Covid-19 jab. They noted that most deaths in the current Omicron outbreak were among people in this age group. It comes as Hong Kong reported 2,644 Covid infections on Thursday, a slight drop from the day before. Health authorities also reported 97 more deaths, including a 27-year-old asthma patient who fainted at home. Natale Ching reports:
Healthy or former Covid patients can delay fourth jab  Listenfacebook
Professor Ivan Hung from the University of Hong Kong, who is also a government pandemic advisor, says elderly people's antibody levels tend to drop quite drastically against the Omicron variant. But Hung told Frank Yung that triple-jabbed healthy individuals or recently-recovered patients could wait for six months to get their fourth Covid jab:
New surface coating that kills Omicron  Listenfacebook
Researchers from the University of Science and Technology say they have developed a new surface coating that can kill the Omicron variant and other germs. The team says the coating works by damaging the outer layer of bacteria and viruses, and its non-adhesive feature prevents pathogens from colonising a surface. The leader of the study, Professor Yeung King-lun, told Joanne Wong that the material was transparent and glossy, and could be used on different surfaces, including food containers:
Lawmakers address Lee's suitability for CE  Listenfacebook
Hong Kong will be left without anyone formally acting as the number two official for the time being, as Beijing considers John Lee’s request to resign to pave the way for a run at the top job. The Chief Executive Carrie Lam told a press conference on Thursday that there was no constitutional requirement to immediately name a replacement, and that Beijing would consider Lee’s resignation as Chief Secretary and his proposed replacement at the same time. Meanwhile, several lawmakers have brushed off concerns over what some see as Lee's lack of experience in finance and social affairs. They believe his cabinet will help him, if he runs and wins the Chief Executive election. Frances Sit reports:
Purchase of laser pointers leads to jail term  Listenfacebook
A former president of Baptist University's student union has been sentenced to nine months in prison for resisting arrest and perverting the course of justice in relation to the purchase of laser pointers during the 2019 protests. Frank Yung reports:
NSL police charge two with sedition  Listenfacebook
National security police have charged two people with sedition. It comes after six people were arrested on Wednesday for alleged security law breaches. Aaron Tam reports:
More makeshift Covid hospitals built in Shanghai  Listenfacebook
Authorities in Shanghai have been converting the National Exhibition and Convention Centre into the city's largest makeshift hospital, offering 40,000 beds for Covid-19 patients with mild or no symptoms. State media says the refurbishing will be completed by Friday. Two other facilities - the Shanghai World Expo Exhibition & Convention Centre and Shanghai New International Expo Centre - have already been turned into makeshift hospitals, accommodating 20,000 Covid patients each. The number of new infections in Shanghai rose by almost 3,000 on Thursday to just under 20,000. The new record comes as authorities admit they're struggling to meet people's daily needs amid an indefinite lockdown there. Natale Ching reports:
China votes against suspending Russia from UN body  Listenfacebook
The UN General Assembly has voted to suspend Russia from the Human Rights Council following reports of "gross and systematic violations of human rights" by Russian troops in Ukraine. The resolution garnered 93 votes in favour, with 24 voting against. The resolution was initiated by the United States. China was among those who voted against it. Ahead of the vote, China's UN ambassador, Zhang Jun, said suspending Russia would "add fuel to the fire" and set a "new dangerous precedent". Aaron Tam reports: