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Friday, May 07, 2021

Bars strongly oppose to harsh reopening conditions

Bars strongly oppose to harsh reopening conditions

The bar industry strongly opposed the reopening conditions suggested by the government’s “Vaccine Bubble” plan.
The Hong Kong Bar and Club Association warned the government that at least nine out of ten bars will be affected and there will be a 10 percent unemployment rate increase, by executing those measures.

The government earlier set two conditions for bars in the city to reopen. The first one is that all staffers and customers have to receive their first dose of vaccine, and the second is that all customers have to use the LeaveHomeSafe app.

Chin Chun-wing, Chairman of HK Bar and Club Association, said almost the entire industry agreed that it is difficult to comply with the government’s requirements, after interviewing around 300 bars operators.

Chin explained that bar staffers are not law enforcers and cannot verify whether customers already had their jabs or not.

He added that only less than 10 percent residents in the city are inoculated and can visit bars. The number of customers probably can’t even support operation of 100 bars, according to Chin.

Chin continued, saying that if the government insists on executing those measures, they are only encouraging those who have not received their shots to visit unlicensed bars. That could be a problem for health officials to trace the infection.

Chin will meet Chui Tak-yi, Under Secretary for Food and Health, on Friday to reflect the industry’s opinions.

One of the bar operators said that around 70 percent of employees have concerns about the vaccines, and they cannot be forced for vaccination. An employee also said most customers won't get their shots simply because they can visit bars again, and the government should think twice before launching any new measures.

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