The Government announced today that it will tighten the border control measures for inbound travellers based on the vaccine bubble concept so as to build an anti-epidemic barrier for Hong Kong to prevent imported COVID-19 cases.
Under the new measures, overseas places will be recategorised into high, medium and low-risk groups, and relevant boarding, quarantine and testing requirements will be implemented based on risk levels.
All inbound travellers are required to present prior to boarding proof of a negative COVID-19 nucleic acid test result conducted within 72 hours before the aircraft’s scheduled departure time and confirmation of a room reservation at a designated quarantine hotel in Hong Kong.
Upon arrival, they will be subject to the test-and-hold arrangement at the airport. Upon confirmation of negative test results, they must proceed to the designated quarantine hotels for compulsory quarantine via designated transport arranged by the Government.
Only fully vaccinated Hong Kong residents are allowed to board flights for Hong Kong from high-risk places.
They must undergo a 21-day compulsory quarantine and will be subject to four tests to be conducted during the period, followed by a seven-day self-monitoring period as well as compulsory testing on the 26th day of arrival in Hong Kong at any community testing centre.
For medium-risk places, only Hong Kong residents and fully vaccinated non-Hong Kong residents are allowed to board flights for Hong Kong.
Fully vaccinated travellers from medium and low-risk places are subject to a shortened quarantine period of 14 days and seven days.
Additionally, travellers from medium-risk places who have been fully vaccinated and hold proof of a positive serology antibody test result are also allowed to have a shortened quarantine period of seven days, followed by a seven-day self-monitoring period.
The new measures will take effect from August 9.
The flight-specific suspension mechanism will be kept in place and applicable to all groups of specified places.
Meanwhile, the Government will strengthen vaccination and regular testing arrangements for staff of the airport, designated quarantine hotels and designated transport to the hotels.
It noted that vaccination for such staff must be sped up as a few recent COVID-19 cases involving mutant strains have affected staff of the airport and designated quarantine hotels, and that the transmissibility of mutant strains is extremely high.