Hong Kong and China are the only places in the world still attempting a “Covid Zero” approach, which entails tight measures such as protracted quarantines, official contact tracking, and targeted testing attacks in order to eliminate local transmission of the coronavirus.
According to a government consultant after successfully navigating the introduction of quarantine-free borders with mainland China and increasing the local vaccination rate, Hong Kong might open up to worldwide travel in around six months.
In an interview on Monday, Lam Ching-Choi, a Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam’s Advisory Executive Council, said the Chinese territory needs to finish assigning open borders with the mainland. While also using the next few months to boost the city’s dwindling Covid-19 inoculation rate among the elderly.
Despite having enough vaccines when they first became available, Hong Kong’s population of 7.4 million has failed to be inoculated.
Vaccine apprehension, fueled by fears of negative effects, has limited their usage, particularly among the elderly. In Hong Kong, only 17% of persons aged 80 up had received at least one vaccination, compared to 69% of the entire eligible population.
Government efforts, such as targeted pop-up vaccination booths in malls and public housing complexes, have not raised vaccination rates among older Hong Kong residents.
As other states open up, Hong Kong and China remain the only areas in the world still pursuing a “Covid Zero” approach. This entails severe measures like protracted quarantines, meticulous contact tracing, and targeted testing blitzes to prevent local transmission of the virus.
However, the strategy has failed to destroy the virus in China completely.
It has battled to contain its fourth outbreak of the more-transmissible delta form in the last five months. International corporations and citizens in more cosmopolitan Hong Kong have expressed their displeasure with the measures, including mandatory hotel quarantines of up to 21 days if they leave and return to the city.
Foreign business chambers have warned the government that the new travel limitations risk destroying Hong Kong’s status. At the same time, a global financial center, including that there is no end game or exit strategy in place.
Source: Hindustan time