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HK logs 3.3k COVID-19 cases

The Centre for Health Protection today said it is investigating 3,362 additional locally acquired COVID-19 cases, of which 493 were identified through nucleic acid tests and 2,869 via rapid antigen tests.   Separately, 118 imported cases were detected.   Furthermore, seven residential care homes for the elderly and one for disabled people logged nine cases involving their residents.   The Hospital Authority reported that 33 patients passed away in public hospitals. According to a preliminary analysis, the cause of death for 13 patients was related to COVID-19, while that of the remaining 20 patients was unrelated.   It also registered six more critical cases, bringing the number of patients in critical condition to 99.   As there were positive sewage test results with relatively high viral loads in several areas of Tuen Mun, Yuen Long and Kowloon City districts, the respective district offices will distribute COVID-19 rapid test kits to relevant residents as well as cleaning

Accounting body to add functions

Secretary for Financial Services & the Treasury Christopher Hui today welcomed the passage of the Financial Reporting Council (Amendment) Bill 2021 by the Legislative Council.   The amended ordinance, which expands the Financial Reporting Council (FRC)’s statutory functions, would enhance the regulatory regime of Hong Kong’s accounting profession, the Government noted.   Becoming a full-fledged independent regulatory body for the accounting profession, the FRC will, in the new name of Accounting & Financial Reporting Council under the new regime, perform more duties, including the issuance of practising certificates to certified public accountants, registration of accounting practice units and public interest entities auditors, and inspection, investigation and discipline work of the accounting profession. It will also oversee the Institute of Certified Public Accountants’ performance in its statutory professional functions.   Mr Hui said: “The amended ordinance brings Hong Kong’s regulatory regime of the accounting profession more in line with international developments and with increased coherence and efficiency, hence reinforcing our status as an international financial centre and business hub, and facilitating the long-term development of the profession.”   The Government will draw up the subsidiary legislation to provide for the transitional arrangements of the new regulatory regime, he added.   Meanwhile, the FRC will prepare guidelines and administrative documents in relation to its expanded powers, with the accounting profession and other stakeholders engaged in the process.   After the preparatory work has been completed, the Secretary for Financial Services & the Treasury will announce in the Gazette the amended ordinance’s commencement date.
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