Coronavirus News (Jan 29): Closures Increasing
29 Jan 2020
Here is a list from official sources summarizing various border closures and travel restrictions that have recently been announced by the China government and other others to help minimize the spread of infections of the new coronavirus.
Hong Kong / Mainland China Port Closures
Yesterday afternoon, Chief Executive of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of Hong Kong, Carrie Lam, held a press conference where she announced that some port services will be suspended from the early morning hours of Thursday January 30th.
Closed from January 30:
- Hong Kong section of the Guangzhou-Shenzhen-Hong Kong Express Rail Link;
- The Intercity Through Train;
- West Kowloon Station;
- Hung Hom Station (Port);
- Passenger services at Sha Tau Kok and Man Kam To (Wenjindu) Ports (drivers carrying goods will still be allowed to cross);
- Cross border ferries at Tsim Sha Tsui and Tuen Mun.
- Lo Wu Station;
- Lok Ma Chau Spur Line of the East Rail Line;
- Cross boundary coach and shuttle bus services (including the short-haul cross boundary coach service at Huanggang Port, Yellow Bus and Gold Bus) using crossings other than the Sha Tau Kok and Man Kam To Control Points (i.e. the Lok Ma Chau Control Point, Shenzhen Bay Port and Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge Hong Kong Port) will reduce their service frequency;
- There may be frequency adjustments to the services going to and from Hong Kong-Macau Ferry Terminal at Sheung Wan.
Shekou Ferry service to Hong Kong International Airport was not specifically mentioned in any of the announcements; however, as of 8:45 a.m. this morning, tickets were still on sale for the rest of this week. See more ferry schedule changes below.
Hong Kong and Macau Halt Entry of Mainland Chinese Citizens
Effective immediately, the immigration management department of the national public security organs will suspend the acceptance, approval, and issuance of visas for group and individual tours, and the weekly visas for Shenzhen citizens, to Mainland residents to visit Hong Kong and Macau. Residents currently holding valid visas to Hong Kong and Macao during this suspension period but have not been able to travel, will be able to re-apply for the same type and valid period of tourism at a later date free-of-charge after the services have been restored. No date has yet been given as to when that will be.
Shekou, Zhuhai, Macau Ferry Service Suspensions
In addition to the previous changes to the Shekou Ferry Schedules published earlier this month (found here), the following flights have been suspended:
Zhuhai Line from January 27 to February 3:
- Shekou->Zhuhai 20:00, 21:30
- Zhuhai->Shekou 21:00, 20:00
- Macau Line January 27:
- Shekou->Taipa 20:15, 21:00
Macau Line January 28-February 2:
- Shekou->Taipa 08:30, 09:30, 12:30, 17:30, 20:15, 21:00
- Taipa->Shekou 08:30, 09:00, 10:00, 11:00, 14:00, 19:00
- Shekou->New Terminal 11:30, 14:30, 15:30, 18:30
- New Terminal->Shekou 13:00, 16:00, 17:00, and 20:00
Macau Line February 3:
Taipa->Shekou 08:30, 09:00 flight suspension
Aviation Flights Between Hong Kong and Mainland Halved
From January 30, four local airlines, including Cathay Pacific Airways, Hong Kong Airlines, Cathay Dragon and Hong Kong Express, will gradually reduce their scheduled passenger flights between Hong Kong and 24 Mainland destinations from about 480 flights weekly to about 240 flights until further notice. Airlines will announce details of the arrangements on their websites and assist the affected passengers to rebook, cancel and reroute their tickets. All flights between Hong Kong and Hubei Province have been suspended since January 24. The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government has also contacted the relevant Mainland authorities and airlines asking them to gradulally reduce to about half the passenger flights between Hong Kong and Mainland destinations. The relevant airlines will announce details of the arrangements.
New Restrictions Crossing Mongolia's Border with China
Effective yesterday, the Mongolian government has temporarily limited the customs clearance of passengers entering and leaving the China-Mongolia highway borders. Foreign citizens who travel to China via the border of Mongolia are still allowed to exit from all border ports. Citizens of China and third-party countries who come to Mongolia in the name of tourism or hold "J" tourist visas, will not be able to enter except through Mongolia's Chinggis Khaan International Airport airport and Zammen-Ude railway port. Chinese citizens or citizens of third-party countries holding visas other than "J" tourist visas can still enter and exit the border ports of the two countries.
Singapore Restricts Entry of Chinese from Hubei or those who have Visited Hubei
Yesterday, Singapore began banning entry of all new visitors who hold passports issued by Hubei Province, China, from entering the country. People who have visited Hubei in the past 14 days, no matter which passport they are holding, are also not allowed to enter Singapore or transfer. Singapore will immediately suspend the issuing of various visas to holders of passports issued by Hubei, including short-term visas, single and multiple entry visas and 96-hour transit visas. Those who have visited Hubei Province in the past 14 days and who have already entered Singapore must hold a quarantine and infection risk assessment. Isolation can be done at home or at a public medical place. Relevant departments will call or visit to check the isolation. Violations of the quarantine order will result in a fine of up to 10,000 Signapore Dollars, imprisonment of up to 6 months, or both.
Malaysia Temporarily Restricts Entry of Chinese from Hubei
On January 27th, the Prime Minister's Office of Malaysia announced that a temporary ban of Chinese citizens from Wuhan and Hubei Province from entering Malaysia will take effect immediately.
Kazahkstan Suspends 72-Hour Transit Visa for Chinese Citizens
The Kazakh government announced that from January 27th, the 72-hour visa-free transit policy for Chinese citizens will be suspended. No timeframe has yet been given as to when it will be reinstated.
All Travelers In & Out of China Required to Complete Health Form
The entry and exit ports now require all passengers fill out an Immigration Health Declaration Card of the People's Republic of China to the customs health and quarantine department, and cooperate with health quarantine work such as temperature monitoring, medical inspection, and medical inspection.
Businesses and Schools to Remain Closed
On January 28th, the People's Government of Guangdong Province announced that the resumption of work for various enterprises in this administrative area shall not be earlier than 24:00 on February 9th, unless they are involved in essential urban or rural services; such as water supply, power supply, oil and gas, communication, public transportation, environmental protection, municipal environmental sanitation; epidemic prevention and control; medical equipment, pharmaceuticals, protective supplies production, transportation and sales, etc.; people's daily necessities, such as supermarket stores, food production, logistics and distribution industries; and other related enterprises that are involved in important national economy and people's livelihood, for Hong Kong, Macao and special circumstances that require the need to resume work urgently. Employers shall protect the legitimate rights and interests of employees in accordance with the law. See the "Guangdong Announces Job Protection Requirements for Affected Employees" section here for related information.
Additionally, primary and secondary schools and kindergartens in this administrative area will not open before February 17th, and tertiary institutions, vocational schools and technical colleges will not open before February 24th. Enterprises, schools and employers shall implement prevention and control measures; strengthen the health monitoring of employees, teachers and students; improve corresponding facilities and equipment; provide sanitation supplies and isolation areas; and carry out environmental sanitation and key site disinfection.
Various charity organizations are working hard to help those in need in Wuhan. If you'd like to help, here's a list of places you can contact.
Shenzhen Caring Action Charity Foundation
Account Name: Shenzhen Caring Action Public Welfare Foundation
Bank: China Minsheng Bank Shenzhen Futian Branch
Account number: 1806 0142 1000 2610
Please note for donations: fight against the epidemic (抗击疫情)
Contact for material donation:
Chen Mei: 18676745367
Yang Navy: 15338800619
Wu Bing: 13723477428
Wuhan Charity Federation
Accepting donations and general supplies. The telephone numbers are: 027-85729696, 027-85751277, 027-85678311, 027-85798437. Contact: Wang Liang 13627104336
Accepted account name: Wuhan Charity Federation
Account number: 421860158018170139664;
Bank: Bank of Communications Hubei Branch Sales Department (860158);
No. of Bank of China: 301521000021
Wuhan Red Cross Society
Receiving special supplies such as medical consumables and protective supplies. Contact number: 027-82788599, 027-82210181, 027-82812604, 027-82858499, 027-82856122. Contact: Luo Gangqiang 13297963117.
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Every Wednesday at George & Dragon: two specials for you! Wings Wednesday and our Burger & Beer Special. Beautiful chicken wings or our juicy burgers at a special price, and with any burger or 12 wings, we'll throw in a free pint of lager!
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