A restaurant in Tseung Kwan O Photo: Asia Times

Hong Kong is a step closer to loosening its social-distancing measures after recording only one local Covid-19 infection over the past 14 days.

On Thursday, the Centre for Health Protection said two imported cases were identified, bringing the total number of confirmed cases in the city to 1,033. Over the past week, 18 cases were recorded, down 59% from 44 cases in the week ended April 16. 

On April 19, one local infection was recorded – a 47-year-old Virgin Atlantic ground attendant who had no travel history during the incubation period. Before that, the last locally infected patient was identified on April 9.

The situation in Macau was even better – the gaming city has not recorded any new Covid-19 infections since April 9. Macau will allow its 27,589 secondary school students to go back to class from May 4 to 11. 

Although Hong Kong’s epidemic situation is improving, imported cases remain a threat.

Hong Kong’s Centre for Health Protection urged members of the public to maintain an appropriate social distance from other people whenever possible. It said people should go out less and avoid social activities such as group dining to reduce the risk of contact with people who are infected but asymptomatic. 

On Tuesday, the Hong Kong government announced it was extending social-distancing measures until May 7. However, restaurants will no longer be required to cut the number of tables they have in use by half.

Ho Pak-leung, head of the University of Hong Kong’s Centre for Infection, said Thursday in a radio program that Hong Kong may consider loosening some of its social-distancing measures from May 7, assuming there are no more local infections in the next two weeks.

Singapore migrants

Due to an outbreak in the migrant worker community, the number of cases in Singapore surpassed 10,000 on Wednesday, compared with about 200 cases a month ago. 

Seventeen foreign domestic workers have been confirmed to have Covid-19 in the city-state so far. Most of them were infected by their employers, not by other migrant workers, according to the Ministry of Health.

Read: Anti-epidemic measures extended by 14 days in HK

Read: Macau to reopen schools while HK struggling