There were 43 new coronavirus cases reported in Hong Kong on Saturday, the highest daily spike in three months. Of those, 36 were broadcast locally – 13 of which were undetectable.
The quarantine-free journey to both destinations is huge, with strict arrival regulations for months. When the coronavirus epidemic struck, the two governments closed borders and denied entry to many immigrants and short-term visitors. In Hong Kong, returning residents face a 14-day quarantine and must wear an electronic bracelet to find out their whereabouts.
Understand how the bubble works
The bubble starts on Sunday with one flight per city per day, with a quota of 200 passengers per flight – then the set is increased to two flights per day.
Passengers are required to enable certain parameters such as not making trips in the previous 14 days and undergoing the mandatory Kovid-19 tests. But will not be subject to any detention or stay-home notice requirements or restricted travel upon their arrival.
However, if the Kovid-19 situation in this arrangement deteriorates in any city, the plan will be discontinued.
The Singapore Civil Aviation Authority announced on Saturday morning that the travel bubble with Hong Kong would be launched according to schedule. But later that day, city-state transport minister Ong Ye Kung announced a change in plan.
“In view of the developing situation in Hong Kong, Secretary Edward You and I discussed further this afternoon and decided it would be best to postpone the launch of ATB for two weeks. We will review the new launch date in two weeks and update again,” Ong said.
The past few days, after a small number of cases, have seen an increase in Hong Kong coronavirus infections.
The city health care center has strongly urged people to avoid all unnecessary travel outside of Hong Kong and to urge residents to refrain from going out, eating and socializing.
“The growth rate is alarming,” said Chuang Shuk-kwan, head of communication at the Hong Kong Center for Health Protection.
She warned that this new increase in cases was “very difficult to control”.
This article was contributed by CNN’s Jesse Young.