Nov. 3 (UPI) — Hong Kong is requiring all overseas travelers to quarantine at a hotel for 14 days, with the exception of mainland China, after a mainland Chinese woman tested positive for the coronavirus in Hong Kong on Sunday.
The government of Hong Kong said the 14-day hotel quarantine is mandatory for all visitors, with the exception of people coming from the Chinese mainland, the special administrative region of Macau and Taiwan, the South China Morning Post reported Tuesday.
Starting Nov. 13, all other travelers will be required to show proof of a room reservation at a Hong Kong hotel. Before the policy goes into effect, arrivals can still quarantine at home for two weeks.
“We wanted to tighten the quarantine measures due to the worsening COVID-19 situation globally,” said Chuang Shuk-kwan, a physician and head of the disease branch of Hong Kong’s Center for Health Protection. “In the past, there were a few cases [of people who] infected other family members while they were quarantining at home.”
Hong Kong’s confirmed cases now stand at 5,345, lower than most neighboring countries but still higher than Taiwan, which has recorded only 564 cases of COVID-19 since the beginning of the pandemic.
China reported 86,070 cases on Tuesday, but the country is being exempted from the hotel quarantine requirement at a time when Hong Kong authorities have been curbing pro-democracy protests.
A cluster of infections at Hong Kong’s Mui Wo beach resort hotel has been traced to a Chinese national who tested positive on Sunday, the Hong Kong Free Press reported.
The woman, identified as a 42-year-old sex worker, is facing deportation after reportedly gaining illegal entry into Hong Kong, where police are tracking down about 100 clients who had contact with the woman, according to Hong Kong news service HK01.
On Tuesday Chinese leader Xi Jinping said uncertainties face China, as well as “shocks and challenges,” during a meeting of the Chinese Communist Party’s Central Committee.
Last month Xi stressed the importance of integrating Hong Kong to the mainland on the 40th anniversary of the establishment of the Shenzhen special economic zone.