More than 23,000 Hongkongers signed up on Friday in the first hour of registration for the city’s new Covid-19 health code, which is required for quarantine-free travel to mainland China under a long-awaited reopening of the border.
The health code is linked to the new version of the official risk-exposure app. Using a QR code, it essentially serves as an entry ticket for the mainland, with border officials only accepting green codes indicating the lowest level of risk. Joining the scheme is voluntary for those not wanting to visit the mainland.
Quarantine-free travel to the mainland – initially limited to Guangdong – is expected to launch shortly after the December 19 Legislative Council election, according to insiders.
Beijing recently gave its final approval for the initial phase of reopening the border, but officials have not yet said how many people will be allowed to cross the border each day. Priority is expected to be given to businesspeople and families deserving compassionate assistance.
The updated app will allow users to link their Hong Kong travel history over the past to the new health code.
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