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FS visits biomedical firm in UK

Financial Secretary Paul Chan yesterday visited a biopharmaceutical company and the Royal College of Art, and attended a lunch hosted by the China-Britain Business Council, as part of his ongoing trip to London.   Mr Chan visited AstraZeneca and met the company’s senior management to learn about its drug research and development activities, as well as its latest expansion plans.   AstraZeneca indicated that following in-depth talks with Hong Kong’s Office for Attracting Strategic Enterprises, it plans to develop a research and development centre in Hong Kong and will engage in further discussion with relevant government departments on the matter.   The Financial Secretary then attended a roundtable luncheon held by the China-Britain Business Council, and met representatives of British enterprises that do business, or plan to do business, either in the Mainland or Hong Kong.   Mr Chan later visited the Royal College of Art, which collaborated with the Hong Kong Polytechnic Unive

Designated flights from UK set

The Government today announced the arrangements for two designated flights from the UK to Hong Kong, with the CX2252 flights departing from London on April 21 and 28 at 9.10am.   It will specify that passengers of the two designated flights will not be subject to the restriction on boarding for Hong Kong, to ensure the orderly return of Hong Kong residents from the UK, and reduce the infection risks of a large group of travellers arriving at the same time.     The Government will also arrange for these returnees to undergo the 21-day compulsory quarantine in a specified quarantine facility.    The designated flights will depart from London. Hong Kong residents who have stayed in any extremely high-risk places or Group A specified places on the day of boarding or the 21 days before that day, can board for direct return to Hong Kong.   Travellers arriving on the designated flights will all be required to undergo compulsory quarantine at the centrally managed specified quarantine facility, Rambler Garden Hotel in Tsing Yi for 21 days. They cannot stay at hotels under the Designated Quarantine Hotel Scheme.   The returnees under quarantine will be tested again on the seventh, 12th and 19th days during quarantine.   The airline will open the ticketing reservation system on April 8 and travellers who have successfully booked tickets will be redirected to the reservation system of the specified quarantine facility to book their rooms at a rate of $400 to $500 per night.   Upon check-in, travellers will be required to present negative result proof of a reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) nucleic acid test for COVID-19, conducted within 72 hours before the scheduled time of departure of the aircraft.   Results of tests conducted using other techniques will not be accepted.   The travellers must also present the confirmation of their room reservation in the specified quarantine facility for 21 nights after their arrival.   Additionally, the Government announced the latest quarantine arrangements for arrivals from overseas low-risk specified places.   The compulsory quarantine period for people arriving in Hong Kong on or after April 9, and who have only stayed in Australia, New Zealand or Singapore, or Group D specified places on the day of arrival in Hong Kong or during the 21 days before that day, will be shortened to 14 days.   They will still be required to self-monitor for the subsequent seven days and be subject to compulsory testing on the 19th day after their arrival. The relevant people will still be required to undergo compulsory quarantine in designated quarantine hotels.   This arrangement will be applicable to both Hong Kong residents and non-Hong Kong residents.   Given that vaccination programmes have been rolled out in many places, the Government is considering adjustments to the compulsory quarantine requirements for people who have stayed in other non-high-risk places upon arrival.   If the relevant people have completed vaccination, their existing 21-day compulsory quarantine period may be shortened, while they would still have to self-monitor for a certain period and be subject to additional compulsory testing.   Those who have not yet been vaccinated would still be subject to 21-day compulsory quarantine in designated quarantine hotels.   The measure’s implementation date and details will be announced in due course.   Except for the arrangements for the designated flights departing from the UK, and the newly added Group D specified places, the existing requirements applicable to the other groups of specified places remain unchanged.

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