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2 jab centres to provide BioNTech

The public can make reservations from tomorrow to receive free BioNTech jabs at the community vaccination centres (CVCs) at Sun Yat Sen Memorial Park Sports Centre and Boundary Street Sports Centre, the Government announced today.   The two CVCs will provide vaccination services from January 26, bringing the number of such centres to 14.   The Government said there are also more vaccination booths or staff members at vaccination venues. The current vaccination capacity has increased by 77% from the beginning of the month, reaching 1.77 million doses a month or nearly 60,000 doses a day.   Separately, all CVCs will be closed during the Lunar New Year from January 31 to February 2.   Except for the two CVCs at private hospitals which will be closed for one more day, CVCs will provide normal services on the third day of the Lunar New Year on February 3.   Apart from going to the CVCs, eligible people can also receive free COVID-19 vaccination through 25 Hospital Authority genera

Cruise travel queries answered

Secretary for Commerce & Economic Development Edward Yau said exceptional measures would need to be taken, by both cruise operators as well as patrons, before cruise travel can resume.   Mr Yau made the remarks while fielding questions about taking “cruises to nowhere” and incentives for COVID-19 vaccination at a media session after attending a Legislative Council meeting today.   He said: “Given the global pandemic situation and some unhappy incidents where outbreaks happened in cruise lines, I think the public or the operators will be exceptionally cautious in resuming any form of cruise travel.   “But having said that, there are examples of cruises departing from the port, going out to the high seas and returning without calling on any ports, thereby eliminating any chance of getting the virus from another place.”   Mr Yau explained that while the “cruise to nowhere” idea is an area of compromise, extraordinary arrangements would need to be carried out beforehand to ensure the safety of everyone involved.   “There are exceptional measures that would need to be taken both by the operators as well as the patrons to make sure that this is a safe journey worth taking, as we are also aware that the public have been stranded for quite a long time in the case of outbreaks.   “Some people say this kind of short cruise resembles staycations where people stay in hotels. If sufficient precautions are taken and if crew members fulfil all the quarantine, testing as well as vaccination requirements, would it be a safe start for selected few to have this limited short cruise?   “Of course, there should be extra protections for patrons, they also need to do the vaccination, which, as I said, is becoming a new norm for any resumption of travelling in the long term. Let’s start preparing ourselves.”   Mr Yau added that the Government would welcome incentives proposed by the private or commercial sectors to boost vaccination.   “Vaccination does provide a very strong protection for individuals and the community at large, minimising a public health hazard.   “The Government will be happy to see any incentives by individuals or enterprises to help this campaign of making people realise that it is for the good of all the community.”
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