Dine-in hours to end 10PM starting Friday after more social distancing rules eased

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Prof. Sophia Chan, Secretary for Food and Health (SCREENSHOT: isd.gov.hk)

The government announced a new round of relaxation of social distancing measures Wednesday in light of a week-long mass testing set to detect silent carriers of coronavirus and a downward trend of local infections.

Prof. Sophia Chan, Secretary for Food and Health, told reporters Tuesday that evening dine-in services will be extended from 9 p.m. to 10 p.m. beginning Friday, Sep. 4.

Some premises and establishments will be also allowed to reopen on that day—including fitness centers and places for amusement—subject to conditions.

But the ban on public gatherings larger than two people as well as the mandatory wearing of masks in public transportation and public areas stays.

The latest measures will be in place for a week until Sep. 10.

Chan said people’s physical and mental health were taken into consideration with the relaxation of the social distancing policies.

She appealed to the public to take part in the universal community testing program to provide authorities with more information to guide them in easing restrictions in the future.

“We will see whether we have room to further relax these measures,” Chan said in Cantonese.

On Aug. 28, the ban on dine-in services during the evening was limited, but was limited up until 9 p.m. Masks were no longer required in country parks and during “strenuous” exercise.

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