Hong Kong-China travel bubble to be launched from December 19

Only those with the Hong Kong Health Code will be allowed to cross the border.
Only those with the Hong Kong Health Code will be allowed to cross the border.

Authorities in China have finally announced the country will open its borders for travellers from Hong Kong from December 19.

China.- The long-awaited travel bubble between China and Hong Kong will be launched from December 19, according to the South China Morning Post. Beijing will remove quarantine requirements for passengers from Hong Kong, but only if they must meet certain requirements.

The requirements include the use of the Hong Kong health code system, which was launched last Friday. The system requires applicants to provide their full name, Hong Kong identity card number and date of issuance, contact number, home address and a proof of address.

The data obtained will be sent to the authorities in Macau and mainland China to be converted into their respective health codes. Only those who hold a “green” valid health code will be allowed to cross the border. According to reports, quarantine-free travel with China will initially be restricted to Guangdong Province. 

Asian Gaming Brief has reported that over 82,900 people signed up to the Health Code system on the first morning of its rollout.

Currently, those travelling between Hong Kong and Macau or mainland China are required to undergo 14 days of hotel quarantine upon arrival. The reopening of the border between Hong Kong and China could be a crucial step for Macau as Hong Kong has historically accounted for 15 per cent to 20 per cent of Macau’s total gaming revenue.

Macau gaming and tourism to recover in 2022, analysts say

Macau’s economy is slowly gaining momentum following continued disruption from the Covid-19 pandemic this year, and analysts believe the city will continue to recover in the upcoming months. The Fitch Ratings 2022 Outlook: Greater China report analyses Macau’s perspectives for 2022 and predicts a more stable recovery for the gaming and tourism sectors.

According to Fitch Ratings, Macau’s economic growth rate in 2022 will increase from 25 per cent in 2021 to 36 per cent. Analysts highlight the impact of higher vaccination rates and the phased resumption of the electronic version of the Individual Visit Scheme (IVS).

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