THURSDAY, February 22, 2024

Hong Kong extends flight suspension till March 4

Hong Kong extends flight suspension till March 4

HONG KONG – The Hong Kong government announced on Friday that it will extend to March 4 the suspension of passenger flights from eight countries, while the same restriction will apply to aircraft from Nepal from Saturday.

Having implemented the place-specific flight suspension mechanism from Jan 8, passenger flights from Australia, Canada, France, India, Pakistan, the Philippines, the United Kingdom and the United States are not allowed to land in Hong Kong. This restriction was to be maintained until Feb 18, according to a government press release.  

With the local pandemic situation worsening and many Hong Kong residents returning from these eight places, the government decided to extend the suspension for two weeks from Feb 19 to March 4.

It made the move to prevent imported COVID-19 cases from placing additional pressure on the city’s healthcare system at this crucial juncture of curbing the local epidemic situation, the release said. 

To stop people from the eight countries from travelling to Hong Kong via transit, those who have stayed there for more than two hours within 14 days will be restricted from boarding inbound passenger flights, said the government. 

At the same time, due to a number of imported COVID-19 cases from Nepal, a flight ban will be enforced on passenger aircraft from the country from Saturday until March 4, prohibiting people who have stayed in the South Asian country for more than two hours within 14 days from boarding passenger flights for Hong Kong. 

“We understand that the place-specific flight suspension mechanism is an extremely stringent emergency measure, and will inevitably affect the return journeys of Hong Kong residents from these nine places,” a government spokesman said.  

“However, we must maintain the relevant measure so as to quickly quell the epidemic situation, in order to prevent imported cases from posing additional pressure on the medical system,” added the spokesman.

By Wang Zhan