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Hong Kong: Government to include 15 countries in Covid-19 ‘high risk’ group

19 Aug 2021

The Hong Kong government on Monday (16 August) announced quarantine requirements for persons arriving from 16 overseas places will be tightened in view of the latest developments of the Covid-19 epidemic situation.

The arrangement will take effect from 0.00am on 20 August.

“The global COVID-19 epidemic situation is under serious threat from the Delta variant, with acute surges in the number of confirmed cases within a short period of time in many countries,” said a government spokesman.

“Despite large-scale vaccination programmes, many places are also experiencing resurgence of the virus, which poses enormous challenges to our local anti-epidemic efforts.

“After considering a basket of factors, the Government has decided to upgrade the risk grouping of 16 overseas places to impose more stringent boarding, quarantine and testing requirements on relevant inbound travellers in order to uphold the local barrier against the importation of COVID-19.”

The following 15 overseas places will be upgraded from Group B specified places (medium-risk) to Group A specified places (high-risk):

Bangladesh, Cambodia, France, Greece, Iran, Malaysia, the Netherlands, Spain, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, Tanzania, Thailand, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates and the United States of America.

Australia will be upgraded from Group C specified place (low-risk) to Group B specified place (medium-risk).

The above development is expected to affect the maritime and bunkering sector of Hong Kong.

Ocean-going vessels which have visited the Group A (high-risk) countries within 21 days before arriving at Hong Kong are required to undergo compulsory quarantine for 21 days plus 7 days of self-monitoring regardless of COVID-19 vaccination and antibody status before conducting bunkering operations.

Stringent quarantine measures introduced by the Hong Kong government have deterred vessels from bunkering in Hong Kong with bunker fuel sales volume falling by 70% since the outbreak started in 2020.

The Marine Department of Hong Kong on June 2021 issued a notice to the local shipping industry stating the revision of Covid-19 restrictions for shipping services (i.e. bunkering, reprovisioning of necessities and switching of shipping documents).

Related: Hong Kong bunkering market opens up with latest revision of government Covid-19 measures
RelatedHong Kong: Bunkering industry rallies for financial relief and relaxed Covid-19 measures
RelatedHong Kong: Bunkering operations affected amidst tightening of COVID-19 measures

 

Photo credit: Ruslan Bardash on Unsplash
Published: 19 August, 2021

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