Hong Kong, Singapore to review travel bubble in July

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Tourism in Hong Kong has suffered from a double whammy of political unrest and the COVID-19 pandemic. (PHOTO: Matt Driskill)

https://www.bigmarker.com/series/ebace-connect/series_summit?utm_bmcr_source=MediaThe governments of Hong Kong and Singapore said on Thursday (10 June) that a long-delayed “travel bubble” between the two Asian economic powerhouses will be reviewed in early July after the proposal was derailed for a second time in May due to a spike of cases in Singapore. Both governments would review the target date “taking into account the latest development of the COVID-19 epidemic situation in Singapore, which has been stabilising since early June.”

Since the travel bubble was postponed for a second time, the numbers of community cases and local unlinked COVID-19 cases in Singapore have been slowing. Hong Kong’s COVID-19 situation also continues to remain stable, with very few community cases over the past few weeks. Singapore on Thursday also said it would be relaxing certain curbs it had put into place to help slow the spread of the virus and may in the coming weeks relax restrictions even more.

Singapore’s Transport Minister S. Iswaran and Hong Kong Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development Edward Yau “have maintained close contact and agreed that both sides would review the situation in early July, before making a decision on the target launch dates of the air travel bubble flights,” Singapore’s government said in a statement.

At a multi-ministry task force on COVID-19 press conference on Thursday, Singapore’s Trade and Industry Minister Gan Kim Yong said he had a discussion with his counterpart from Hong Kong recently where they said that it is important for both parties to put in place safe management measures in order for travel to open up. “One of the key measure is really to enhance our vaccination rate,” he said. “Once we have a very high vaccination rate, then it opens up a lot more possibilities and offers greater flexibility, even in international travelling.”

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