Hong Kong to ease COVID restrictions on border with mainland China

Hong Kong's government says it will ease restrictions on its border with mainland China, allowing tens of thousands of people to cross from each side every day without quarantine.

All but three checkpoints on the border have been closed for about three years since February 2020, to prevent the coronavirus from spreading. Travelers from Hong Kong to mainland are required to quarantine.

Hong Kong's Chief Executive John Lee told reporters on Thursday that four border checkpoints will resume operations, bringing the number of checkpoints up and running in the territory to seven, starting Sunday.

In the first phase, up to 60,000 people can travel from Hong Kong to the mainland per day.

A senior official of the Hong Kong Japanese Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Ito Ryoichi, expressed hope that restrictions on distribution of goods will also be lifted.

He said if controls on the movement of both people and goods are eased, full-fledged business activities will resume.