The Macau authorities have tightened entry requirements for all arrivals from the neighbouring city of Hong Kong due to an escalation there in local cases of Covid-19 infection, Macau’s Health Bureau said on Monday.
A 14-day quarantine condition remains in place for all inbound travellers that have been in Hong Kong in the 14 days prior to arrival in Macau.
The new requirement – with effect from 6am on Tuesday (August 4) – is that those inbound from Hong Kong must have a certificate proving they have tested negative for Covid-19 infection, that has been issued within the preceding 72 hours, not within the preceding seven days, as previously.
Alvis Lo Iek Long, a clinical director at Macau public health facility Conde S. Januário Hospital, said on Monday at a regular Macau government briefing on Covid-19, that the city authorities could see no scope currently for easing travel links with Hong Kong, due to the latter’s Covid-19 situation.
Hong Kong has seen an average of 115.9 cases reported per day during the seven-day period from July 28 to Monday inclusive, according to the latest data from that city’s government. As of Monday, the Hong Kong health authorities had recorded a total of 3,589 confirmed cases of Covid-19 infection.
The Covid-19 situation in Hong Kong could “push back any travel bubble” between that city and Macau, said brokerage Sanford C. Bernstein Ltd in a Monday note. The institution’s analysts said that in normal times, Hong Kong visitors contributed “up to 15 percent” annually of Macau’s casino gross gaming revenue.
The Hong Kong government had previously announced that it had extended to September 7 its deadline for the removal of a 14-day quarantine rule for arrivals from Macau, mainland China and Taiwan.
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”There’s been a 20 percent or 30 percent increase in our testing staff to handle globally the amount of extra work that we’ve got, and the Philippines and Macau have definitely contributed to that overall growth”
Chief commercial officer of testing and certification firm GLI