The announcement comes after three years of border controls that have isolated the financial hub from the Chinese mainland.
China announced it will open its border with Hong Kong on Sunday, ending three years of pandemic restrictions that have isolated the financial hub from the Chinese mainland.
Visitors will still need to provide a negative COVID test result within the previous 48 hours before traveling and complete a health declaration form.
More than 236 million trips were made across the border before the pandemic, according to government data.
The moves come after Beijing said it would reopen its international borders and remove the mandatory quarantine from Jan 8.
The announcement is China’s latest step toward undoing its controversial “zero COVID” policy, which was credited with saving lives but inflicting grueling social and economic costs.
Hong Kong, which followed a less stringent version of the “zero COVID” strategy for much of the pandemic, removed most of its restrictions in December, though masks remain mandatory in most settings.
COVID infections in China have risen in recent weeks following the lifting of harsh restrictions, such as lockdowns and mandatory quarantine. Health authorities have reported only a handful of deaths despite evidence from hospitals, morgues, and crematoria that deaths have risen sharply across the country. Some health experts have predicted that the country could experience up to two million deaths due to the population’s lack of natural immunity and irregular vaccination coverage among the elderly.
China has criticized the measures as “unacceptable” and lacking scientific basis.
Source: AL JAZEERA AND NEWS AGENCIES