UNITED24 - Make a charitable donation in support of Ukraine!

Homeland Security

Global Times

HK epidemic situation potentially stabilizing, but it's early to say it has passed peak: Lam

Global Times

By Global Times Published: Mar 12, 2022 07:52 PM

The spread of COVID-19 in Hong Kong has stabilized, but a turning point might have not been reached yet, according to Carrie Lam, chief executive of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region. The city reported around 27,647 new COVID-19 cases on Saturday.

The 27,647 new cases include 11,858 confirmed by rapid antigen tests, according to official data.

It is hoped the city is nearing a turning point with new case numbers falling, and the Hong Kong government has made plans for different scenarios in the coming weeks, including enhancing testing capacity and building up community loop-management facilities if the situation worsens, Lam said on Saturday.

"At this moment, we could not comfortably say that we have passed the peak," Lam said. "Although some experts have said that perhaps we have passed the peak, but we'd rather take a very cautious stance that we will closely monitor the coming days to see whether we are seeing a drop in the confirmed cases, especially under the self-declaration system of those who test positive under the rapid antigen test."

Xia Baolong, head of the Hong Kong and Macao Affairs Office of the State Council, said at the eighth coordination meeting on supporting Hong Kong's epidemic prevention work on Friday that the situation is still severe and complicated in Hong Kong. He stressed the need to keep a cool head and to be prepared for a long-term battle. There should be neither impatience nor slackening in addressing the situation, Xia said.

Disruptive activities will be resolutely dealt with in accordance with the law, and those words and activities slandering the anti-epidemic efforts will be exposed and criticized. No interference with the overall situation of Hong Kong's epidemic prevention work or undermining the city's social stability is allowed, Xia said.

The quarantine facility near the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge was put into service on Saturday, providing about 1,200 beds. It is also the third quarantine facility built and delivered by the central government.

During a press conference after the closing of the fifth session of the 13th National People's Congress on Friday, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang said that the central government is following the COVID-19 situation in Hong Kong and has deep care for the life, health and safety of residents in the city. Li stressed that the SAR government should assume the primary responsibility in fighting COVID-19 and the central government will give its full support.

According to official data up to Saturday, the accumulated number of reported cases for the city's current fifth wave of infection starting the beginning of the year stood at 661,816.

Join the GlobalSecurity.org mailing list