UK to Hong Kong passenger flights to restart later this week

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  • MartynSinclair
    Participant

    IanfromHKG, no link visible



    @CathayLoyalist2
    – as Ian is probably asleep… 🙂 … the link can be accessed by highlighting and clicking on the first word line 4 “Here”….

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    IanFromHKG
    Participant

    It’s embedded in the word “Here” in my earlier post, CathayLoyalist2

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    FormerBA
    Participant

    South China Morning Post Reporting that quarantine being reduced for some but not all and certainly not for Brits or Irish.


    Malachi1
    Participant

    This reply has been reported for inappropriate content.

    Correct. No one has faith in the vaccines. Should tell everyone, everything they need to know about all of this.


    IanFromHKG
    Participant

    In Hong Kong, I think the issue is more that no-one has faith in the government. It doesn’t help, particularly, that the government is pushing Sinovac which – so far as I can determine – has still not had its Phase III trials clinically reviewed. And, bizarrely, HK’s success in containing the virus without the same kind of general lockdown that has occurred elsewhere has perhaps led people to think that vaccination isn’t “necessary”. Unfortunately, the measures taken to achieve this are (speaking as an expat) disproportionately affecting those dependent on (or highly desirous of) travel for work, study or family. At Easter, when our beloved Offspring went back to the UK to continue their studies, we genuinely didn’t know when we would see them again (we are hopeful of a reunion in the autumn, but it comes at a cost in terms of quarantine etc even though the Memsahib and I are fully vaccinated).

    Incidentally, the government here has already indicated that it will not order more Pfizer vaccine (the only other option, which I think every single one of my friends has jumped at). Take-up is so low that because the Pfizer vaccines that are already here will expire at the end of the summer, the government is now offering it to asylum seekers (good) and visitors from China (better than throwing them in the bin, I suppose, but still an odd decision given that the government could donate them to countries in far greater need). From that point on, the only option will be Sinovac…

    Ah well….


    cwoodward
    Participant

    Ian, To say that ‘no-one’ has faith in the HK government I feel is a little sweeping, rather overstates the prevailing situation and lacks context.
    I don’t however disagree that the general populous lacks faith re the vaccine and being vaccinated but then the Cantonese historically have always been very negatively suspicious about these things and so I am not at all surprised.
    It appears that China have now cleared the Pfizer vaccine and so why, that we optimistically refer to as the’HK SAR government’ are ditching it only God knows as they probably have no idea beyond a passing whim that this may possibly score points with the mainland ‘fat controller’. This decision was of course made prior to the mainland approving the Pfizer product and so they will probably eventually backtrack on this; if they are true to form.

    I do hope that the situation changes for the better soon and that you are able to catch-up with your offspring in the near future – we are in rather the same situation with one of ours.

    Like it or not ‘We live in interesting times’!


    FastFranky
    Participant

    The current position, from CDC et al, is that a fully vaccinated person can still transmit the disease whilst it remains rife in the community.

    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/science/science-briefs/fully-vaccinated-people.html


    TonyR
    Participant

    The whole vaccination thing is complicated. I think we are about to see a reversal of the Asia-West trend in infections. Asia has done well because of the natural mask culture that existed pre-pandemic and strong lockdowns with a compliant population. But as Australia is now finding, with a largely unvaccinated population and more infectious variants emerging, keeping it out by controls and lock downs is not longer working. So I expect to see a surge in those countries relying on non-vaccination control measures and a continued trend down in countries like the UK, Israel and USA where vaccination rates are high and climbing. The exception to that is the Seychelles where vaccination does not seem to be working well but that may be down to the efficacy of the Chinese vaccines.

    Why 21 days quarantine when vaccinated? Because vaccination doesn’t stop you catching or carrying it but it does make the consequences of that far less severe for you. If you have a largely unvaccinated population though you are almost as much an infection risk to that population as you would be unvaccinated (about a factor 2 less). So Hong Kong etc needs to continue to protect its population from you as a vaccinated carrier. And it may be worse if the Seychelles experience turns out to be about the efficacy of the Chinese vaccines.

    HTH


    cwoodward
    Participant

    I agree with much of TonyR’s above post however I believe the doubts expressed about the efficacy of the the Chinese vaccines are wrong, misplaced and rather dangerous in the context that they are now approved by the WHO as being effective and are much needed by poorer particularly Asian nations for who China is making them increasingly available free or at very low costs.

    As regards Hong Kong here we have both European and Chinese vaccines available and most of the expat population were vaccinated some time ago. the take up by locals has been slower but with the government pushing hard and providing incentives and valuable prizes worth many millions this is now gathering pace and I would expect HK to be close to 50% vaccinated by month end.

    Here we have only one local case in the past month but a few dozen infected arriving passengers mostly from India, Pakistan US, UK, Philippines and Middle east who have been whisked directly to 21 day quarantine from the airport.

    There has been a selective opening of the borders over the past weeks with arrivals from Australia and New Zealand, selective business people from China and now top bankers from across the world being allowed.


    IanFromHKG
    Participant

    Ian, To say that ‘no-one’ has faith in the HK government I feel is a little sweeping, rather overstates the prevailing situation and lacks context.

    Sweeping? Perhaps. But to provide some context, cwoodward, here is a report on RTHK (which is a government department, remember) which mentions lack of trust in the government (or equivalent phrases) no less than three times as being a factor in the low take-up of vaccinations.

    the take up by locals has been slower but with the government pushing hard and providing incentives and valuable prizes worth many millions this is now gathering pace

    Correction – the prizes are being offered by the private sector, NOT the government


    cwoodward
    Participant

    Ian,
    Ian, You must Know as well as I that RTHK is far from a mouthpiece of the HK government (at the moment) much as the BBC is not a mouthpiece of the British government (although recently becoming increasingly so as a tool of self preservation)although they are its ultimate master.(I used to work for them in Asia) thus I consider your post perhaps a little misleading.

    The HK government is indeed offering incentives others are also offering as you mention prizes for the populous to get vaccinated and is about to offer more. It looks to be working with 50,000 vaccinated yesterday.

    With the BBC choosing offer at present a poorly reported and much negatively distorted view of Hong Kong at the behest of its political masters it is I believe important that if we offer a view it is an accurate one. This in order to paint a reasonably accurate picture of the present HK given that many here have not been able to pass this way for pushing a couple of years.

    The picture that I want enlarge to travellers is that HK is exactly the same as it was when you last left 2019 but that with several new mostly underground roads traffic moves a little better.


    HKtraveller
    Participant

    Lack of trust in the government is definitely a factor. But I think it goes much deeper than this. Under the current political environment, many people, especially the younger generation, are actively resisting attempts by the government to push up the vaccination rate. The harder the government tries, the greater the resistance.

    Here is a quote from a friend: “… deciding what gets into my body is the last bit of freedom that I have in this place….”. I am not sure for how long that will last. But that’s another story.


    AnthonyDunn
    Participant

    This reply has been reported for inappropriate content.

    Hi Martyn, it’s been a while.

    A friend who is based over in Shenzhen arrived back into HK to spend 21 days in quarantine before then heading over the border into Shenzhen when he then had to spend another ten days (two weeks?) in a further period of quarantine.

    As HK is now just any other literal Chinese city as far as the CCP leadership is concerned, and as its HK SAR status is meaningless, I am at a loss to understand just why the need for two extended periods of quarantine.

    But, as is increasingly obvious, under its new authoritarian Beijing-compliant leadership, HK is no longer open and friendly towards international business, much of which is now quietly packing up and heading to Singapore. By way of evidence: my brother-in-law is a QC in commercial chambers specialising in International commercial dispute arbitration and resolution. Not only will his erstwhile clients no longer submit themselves to the caprice of a Beijing leant-on judiciary but together with all of his family members, he is now personally banned from HK because his chambers were put on the retaliatory sanctions list after Beijing was hit by sanctions over its conduct in HK and Xinjiang province. You almost could not make up this level of lunacy.

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    IanFromHKG
    Participant

    There is a proposal currently being floated that travellers who are tested positive for antibodies on arrival into HKG might be given an exemption from quarantine – it is much to be hoped that this will come to fruition!

    Ian,
    Ian, You must Know as well as I that RTHK is far from a mouthpiece of the HK government (at the moment) much as the BBC is not a mouthpiece of the British government (although recently becoming increasingly so as a tool of self preservation)although they are its ultimate master.(I used to work for them in Asia) thus I consider your post perhaps a little misleading.
    The HK government is indeed offering incentives others are also offering as you mention prizes for the populous to get vaccinated and is about to offer more. It looks to be working with 50,000 vaccinated yesterday

    It isn’t a mouthpiece yet, cwoodward, although heading in that direction (as witness the 40-episode set of Carrie Lam’s “interviews” with pro-establishment figures lauding the electoral “reforms” – so much for the impartiality requirement in RTHK’s charter). My point, however, was that RTHK is not an anti-establishment organisation (an accusation that could be thrown at, for example, Hong Kong Free Press or Apple Daily) so its reporting can hardly be described as “anti-government”, and accordingly any critical coverage might be given a little more credence than you seem prepared to allow. Also, I can find no record of the government offering incentives other than to civil servants (one day off for each jab), unless you are perhaps referring to the proposed relaxation of social distancing requirements (which are not, in any of the places I have looked, described as “incentives”). Indeed, I seem to recall (although I can’t currently find it) a government post saying it wasn’t the government’s place to offer incentives but that they encouraged the private sector to find it. And the lottery for the apartment, the pre-loaded credit cards and other things being offered are, so far as I can determine, all from the private sector.


    cwoodward
    Participant

    This reply has been reported for inappropriate content.

    I tried hard to ignore the obviously politically driven nonsense in AnthonyDunns piece above. This for 2 reasons, firstly because I do not believe that this forum is a place for political statements and secondly that he seems to have little or no first hand understanding of the Hong Kong that I live and work in.
    My businesses here and in Asia employ some 3000 staff and I and my team have daily contact with the type of people that he mentions plus politicians, bankers and leaders of industry. None have expressed any of the sentiments that he so freely expounds as being fact.

    The security law mentioned is nothing new or particularly noteworthy. It was a clause of the joint declaration written and signed off by the British and China governments in 1996. It should have been enacted in 1997 but its implementation was postponed at the time because it was felt by both governments that it was asking too much of the of the people to expect them overnight to swap elegance to the British to elegance to China. In this I believe them to be wrong as largely due to the poor quality of the subsequent HK leadership implementation was postponed time after time.

    This until it was seized on by small fringe hard right wing elements that had been festering for the previous 20 years of Hong Kong’s very successful operation as a SAR under the British /China joint declaration. Under the British Hong Kong was always a hard governed colony and under China it was also never ever going to be more than a (much softer governed) colony. Everyone was always aware and accepting of this and for over the 20 years of HK being Chinese it work well for all until radical students, children and the normal destructive riff raff of any society (who were often paid) were enticed to rip the guts out of the fabric of HK.
    One evening some 500 of these thugs turned up in my street. Ripped up the paving stones tore down the railing and used both to attack the police. Charged the police with weapons and petrol bombs, barricaded the street, tore down the street lights and then proceeded to smash everything possible in the adjacent MTR station. This all happened 3 meters from my front door and it was only the sturdy 10 foot wall and gates and the brave police that kept them at bay. The battle raged for hours and my family were petrified, it was only when the police were forced to use rubber bullets and tear gas that they were finally dispersed. This was only one of some 150 battles of this kind that literally ripped the guts out of HK and endangered everyone. As HK has no army the only action open to the government was to enact the 20 years delayed joint British/China security law. Otherwise the Hong Kong that we know and love would have been destroyed.

    Mr Dunn states as fact that it is “increasingly obvious that Hong Kong is no longer open and friendly to international business’ and that the rules of international law and commerce are no longer to be trusted. Obvious to who I ask ? Certainly not to me or anyone that I know, have business with or are in general day today contact.
    This is all such patently untrue drivel that it reads like something out of the D.Trump playbook.

    In fact the reverse to the above is true as nothing in the operation of Hong Kong has changed at all or is likely to in the forcible future.

    Hong Kong still operates under British common law, Senior British judges sit in our courts, almost all major banks, auditors, and stockbrokers are increasing their head counts here. Building activity is higher than I can remember it for years and property prices have increased by about 7% in the past 5 months. So many new hotels and restaurants have opened in the past few months that I cannot keep up with them.
    Anything that has changed here (almost nothing has) has been the better for business and stability and the politically inspired negativity being spouted here is frankly utter nonsense.

    As for the idea mentioned above of business rushing off to the restrictive nanny state that is Singapore we all had a very good belly laugh.
    It was not so long ago as I remember that all chewing gum was banned, hair warn below the collar was subject to a penalty of 6 lashes and only a couple of years back an American kid was given 20 lashes for spraying graffiti.
    Good luck with Singapore, you will need it unless you are a member of the local business mafia. As for political freedom its about on a par with North Korea -, oh and don’t forget the taxation

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