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Transcript of remarks by CE at media session before ExCo (with photos/video)
     The Chief Executive, Mr John Lee, today (July 5) led the non-official members of the Executive Council (ExCo) to meet the media before chairing the first meeting of the new-term ExCo. Following is the transcript of remarks of the media session:

Reporter: Thank you Mr Lee. You and President Xi have repeatedly stressed that Hong Kong needs to remain an international connector. Yet it's increasingly hard to come into Hong Kong with the quarantine hotels at max capacity and flights repeatedly being cancelled. What is your solution for addressing these issues? And you've also mentioned on Sunday that you're worried about the daily cases rising. What measures may you take to control this, including social distancing measures? And are you contemplating cutting the quarantine to five days? Thank you.

Chief Executive: Hong Kong is an international city and we know that we have been suffering from the attack of the pandemic in such a way that a lot of activities have been affected. I'm conscious of the need for Hong Kong to remain open and convenient to travellers. But it is also important that we address the risk at the same time so that we will maintain a good balance. 

     I have already asked the Secretary for Health to look at the evidence and statistics to see how we can, while on the one hand, contain the spread of the pandemic, and at the same time reduce the inconvenience to travellers. One of the areas that he's looking at is how the duration of quarantine should be handled. I am giving him time to look at the statistics so that he will formulate some options for me to consider. 

     The second thing is we must continue to keep the pandemic under control because if the figures go up, then consequentially, by ratio, there will be a higher rate of people getting into hospital, which will mean that the hospital service will be affected even if it may still maintain emergency services, but it will affect other services to people in need, particularly those who require consistent and persistent treatments. It is important that we strike a balance so that we reduce the inconvenience to people who are not infected. It is important to find a good method based on science and evidence to reduce inconvenience to people who should be allowed to go about their normal activities once we have identified them to be people who are not infected. 

     Another point I would like the Secretary for Health to look into is to ensure people who face higher risks of getting infected, and also getting into potentially serious illness, we need to protect them well. One of the important measures is to make good use of the PCR (polymerase chain reaction) test so that we can be certain that we will be able to identify those who are infected early, separate them so that they will not be spreading the virus to other people. I know that people are very concerned about the measures that will be taken. But I can tell you that the Secretary for Health is very actively looking at the measures to reduce inconvenience and at the same time, ensuring good protection of people who may face a high risk.

(Please also refer to the Chinese portion of the transcript.)
Ends/Tuesday, July 5, 2022
Issued at HKT 13:38
Today's Press Releases  


The Chief Executive, Mr John Lee (front row, centre); the Chief Secretary for Administration, Mr Chan Kwok-ki (front row, fifth left); the Financial Secretary, Mr Paul Chan (front row, fifth right); and the Secretary for Justice, Mr Paul Lam Ting-kwok, SC (front row, fourth left); meet the press with the non-official members of the Executive Council (ExCo) at the media session before the ExCo meeting today (July 5).
The Chief Executive, Mr John Lee (left), and the Convenor of the Non-official Members of the Executive Council, Mrs Regina Ip (right), speak at a media session before the Executive Council meeting today (July 5).

Audio / Video

CE meets the media