Authorities on both sides are set to review the situation in July prior to deciding on a launch date.
The Singapore-Hong Kong air travel bubble remains on hold despite the improved COVID-19 situation in Singapore, with authorities on both sides set to review the situation in July prior to deciding on a launch date.
“Both Singapore and Hong Kong remain strongly committed to launching the air travel bubble safely. We will continue to monitor the public health situation in both places closely,” said the Ministry of Transport (MOT) on Thursday (10 June) as quoted by Channel News Asia (CNA).
The ministry noted that Hong Kong’s COVID-19 situation has remained stable as it registered very few community cases over the past weeks.
It added that both Hong Kong’s Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development Edward Yau and Singapore’s Transport Minister S Iswaran have maintained “close contact” and agreed that both sides would review the situation in early July, before deciding on the launch dates of air travel bubble flights.
“An update will be provided at that point,” said MOT.
Initially scheduled for launch on 22 November 2020, the Singapore-Hong Kong air travel bubble was deferred after Hong Kong witnessed a hike in COVID-19 infections.
The rescheduled launch on 26 May was also pushed back as Singapore posted an increase in unlinked COVID-19 community cases, reported CNA.
Under the agreement, the air travel bubble would be suspended for at least 14 days in the event the seven-day moving average of unlinked COVID-19 community cases is more than five in Singapore or Hong Kong. The figure excludes cases originating from dormitories housing foreign workers in Singapore.
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Health Minister Ong Ye Kung believes Singapore had not met the criteria for the resumption of the travel bubble.
“And even if we crossed the criteria for resumption … we are in a very cautious state,” he said as quoted by CNA.
“And so we probably don’t want to rush. It’s important that at this state – embers are still there – we want to be quite cautious,” he explained during a press conference by the COVID-19 multi-ministry task force.
Ong, however, noted that it is important to “get conversations going”.
“There’s really … no harm, and in fact good, to continue to talk to our various partners, to see how we can restore our connections with the world safely. When the time is right,” said Ong.
Victor Kang, Digital Content Specialist at PropertyGuru, edited this story. To contact him about this story, email: firstname.lastname@example.org