Hong Kong government bars Singapore Airlines passenger flights from Apr 3 to 16; COVID-19 case detected

SINGAPORE: Singapore Airlines (SIA) passenger flights departing from Singapore will not be allowed to land in Hong Kong between Saturday (Apr 3) to Apr 16, the government of Hong Kong said on Friday.

The announcement came in a daily press release providing updates and COVID-19 case numbers for the territory.

Friday’s press release stated that a passenger on SQ882, flying from Singapore to Hong Kong on Mar 31, was confirmed to have COVID-19 through a specimen collected at the Hong Kong Department of Health’s Temporary Specimen Collection Centre.

In addition, three passengers had also “failed to comply with requirements specified under the Prevention and Control of Disease (Regulation of Cross-boundary Conveyances and Travellers) Regulation (Cap. 599H)”.

“As such, the Hong Kong Department of Health invoked the regulation to prohibit landing of passenger flights from Singapore operated by Singapore Airlines in Hong Kong from April 3 to 16, 2021,” noted the release.

CNA has reached out to SIA for comment. Based on a check on the SIA website, as of 6.40pm on Friday, flights from Singapore to Hong Kong on Apr 8 and returning on Apr 13 were still available for booking. 

TRAVEL BUBBLE POSTPONED

Earlier this week, Singapore Minister for Transport Ong Ye Kung had said that the country is studying a proposal from Hong Kong to reopen borders safely, after a Hong Kong official said the territory had resumed discussions on a travel bubble with Singapore.

“We are very happy that Hong Kong has in recent weeks kept the pandemic under good control. This is a very positive development,” Mr Ong said in a statement on Monday.

READ: Singapore studying proposal from Hong Kong to reopen borders safely: Ong Ye Kung

Singapore and Hong Kong were scheduled to launch an air travel bubble in November last year but it was deferred after Hong Kong saw a surge in COVID-19 cases.

On Nov 21, a day before flights were to begin, it was announced that the launch of the travel bubble had been deferred to early December.

It was later pushed back to 2021, with the exact starting date yet to be determined.

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