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Hong Kong government bans Singapore Airlines passenger flights April 3-16; COVID-19 cases detected

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SINGAPORE: Singapore Airlines (SIA) passenger flights from Singapore will not be allowed to land in Hong Kong between Saturday April 3 and April 16, the Hong Kong government announced on Friday.

The announcement came in a daily press release providing updates and COVID-19 case numbers for the territory.

Friday’s press release said that a passenger on SQ882, flying from Singapore to Hong Kong on March 31, was confirmed to have COVID-19 thanks to a specimen collected at the Department of Health’s Temporary Specimen Collection Center in Hong Kong.

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In addition, three passengers also failed to comply with the requirements specified in the Regulation on Disease Prevention and Control (Regulation of Cross-border Means of Transport and Passengers) (chap. 599H) ”.

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“As such, the Hong Kong Department of Health invoked the regulation to ban the landing of passenger flights from Singapore operated by Singapore Airlines to Hong Kong from April 3 to 16, 2021,” the statement noted.

In response to questions from the UKTN, a spokesperson for the SIA confirmed that the airline had been asked to suspend daily passenger service from Singapore to Hong Kong during these dates.

SIA’s passenger service from Hong Kong to Singapore is unaffected, the spokesperson added.

“The health and safety of our customers and staff is our top priority. We will continue to work with authorities to ensure that all passengers meet regulatory requirements for entry into Hong Kong,” the spokesperson said. .

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“We will also assist health authorities in all contact tracing efforts.”

Based on a check on the SIA website, at 6:40 p.m. on Friday, flights from Singapore to Hong Kong on April 8 and back on April 13 were still available for booking.

POSTPONED TRAVEL BUBBLE

Earlier this week, Singapore’s Transport Minister Ong Ye Kung said the country was considering a Hong Kong proposal to safely reopen the borders, after a Hong Kong official said the territory had taken over. discussions on a travel bubble with Singapore.

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“We are very happy that Hong Kong has brought the pandemic under control in recent weeks. This is a very positive development, ”Mr. Ong said in a statement on Monday.

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Singapore and Hong Kong were due to launch an air bubble in November last year, but it was postponed after Hong Kong saw an increase in the number of COVID-19 cases.

On November 21, a day before the flights started, it was announced that the launch of the travel bubble had been postponed until early December.

It was then pushed back to 2021, with the exact start date yet to be determined.

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