MAY 4 - 10, 2021
Adjustments to inbound traveler quarantine
Quarantine requirements and arrangements for inbound travelers and returnees from overseas will be adjusted from May 12 based on the vaccine bubble concept. For fully vaccinated Hong Kong residents returning from the US, they will have their compulsory hotel quarantine period reduced from 21 to 14 days. This will be followed by seven days of self-monitoring and COVID-19 tests on the 16th and 19th day of their arrival in Hong Kong. Fully vaccinated persons means persons who have received the necessary doses as stipulated in guidelines of a COVID-19 vaccination course 14 days prior to their arrival at Hong Kong. All World Health Organization/National Medical Products Administration/Hong Kong-recognized vaccines are accepted. Separately, Hong Kong has allowed flights from the UK and Ireland to resume. The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) Government will continue to closely monitor the situation, including the developments of the epidemic situation both globally and locally, vaccination progress, and changes in the volume of cross-boundary passenger traffic, and will further adjust the boarding and compulsory quarantine requirements for persons arriving at Hong Kong from places with different risks when necessary.
Hong Kong ranks 3rd in arbitration survey
According to the 2021 International Arbitration Survey released by Queen Mary University of London, the Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre rose one place to rank as the world’s 3rd most-preferred institution for arbitration. Significantly, 50% of the organizations surveyed chose Hong Kong as their preferred venue for arbitration, up from 28% in the previous survey in 2018. The Department of Justice of the HKSAR Government welcomed (Mar 7) the survey result, saying that Hong Kong’s strength in dispute resolution is premised on its infrastructure, business opportunities and pool of talents. “Our Judiciary is independent and impartial while our common law system provides a degree of certainty and predictability for investors and the international business community,” said Secretary for Justice Teresa Cheng, adding that the survey result recognizes Hong Kong’s long-standing and unwavering commitment to the promotion of arbitral services.
Financial review report welcomed
Financial Secretary Paul Chan welcomed (May 10) the publication of the 12th annual report of the Process Review Panel for the Financial Reporting Council. Mr Chan said the process review is an important institutional function designed to help enhance the council’s transparency and accountability in performing its statutory functions. The panel selected and reviewed a number of tasks handled by the council in 2019, and concluded that the council had handled the cases and applications in accordance with its internal procedures. Mr Chan noted that the panel conducted a comprehensive review on selected cases handled by the council, making useful observations and suggestions in its annual report which are conducive to the further improvement of the council’s work.
Arts in Hong Kong
Celebrate and explore Hong Kong’s vibrant arts and cultural scene virtually through Hong Kong Tourism Board’s dedicated website, a one-stop platform providing essential information about Arts in Hong Kong and introducing online showcases, art itineraries, an event calendar, artsy offers, interviews with art insiders, and more. Join Hong Kong’s multidisciplinary artist Ivana Wong and film director Kearen Pang on interactive walks at some of the city’s coolest attractions, including Tai Kwun, The Mills, Hong Kong Museum of Art, and the West Kowloon Cultural District. Or learn more about Hong Kong’s street art at the annual HK Walls Festival, the street art and mural festival (May 8–16), which returns with the takeover of wall space in the seaside district of Sai Kung, and the “Tools of the Trade” exhibition at Soho House (through Jun 6). Find out what are the top 10 not-to-miss art events in Hong Kong this month! 
Hong Kong artist featured in Asia Society's Triennial exhibition
The video installation by Hong Kong artist Cheuk Wing-Nam is part of the Asia Society Triennial exhibition, running through June 27 at the Asia Society Museum in New York. The installation was created in response to the isolation and loneliness brought about by the global phenomenon of sheltering in place to curb the coronavirus pandemic. Accompanying the video is a refurbished telephone magneto (a hand-cranked electrical generator installed in analog telephone), likening the experience of living through the pandemic to wartime while it underscores the perennial need for intimacy and human interaction in times of hardship and disaster.

  • The value of total retail sales in March, provisionally estimated at US$3.5 billion, rose 20.1% year-on-year, with online sales accounting for 7.7% of total sales. After netting out the effect of price changes over the same period, the volume of total retail sales for the month increased 19.8% year-on-year. For the first quarter as a whole, retail sales volume rose 7.2% over a year earlier, but was still far below that in the first quarter of 2019 by 32.5%.

  • Hong Kong’s foreign currency reserve assets fell to US$490.6 billion in April from US$491.4 billion in the previous month. The reserve assets represent about seven times the currency in circulation or 47% of Hong Kong dollar M3. There were no unsettled foreign exchange contracts in April.
Hong Kong and its Basic Law
The Basic Law (BL) is the constitutional document of the HKSAR. Put into effect on July 1, 1997, it enshrines within a legal document the important concept of “One Country, Two Systems”.

Q: What does the Basic Law say about democratic development in Hong Kong?
A: The Basic Law sets out the blueprint for the democratic development of the HKSAR. The method for selecting the Chief Executive and forming the Legislative Council shall be specified in the light of the actual situation in the HKSAR and in accordance with the principle of gradual and orderly progress. The ultimate aim is the election of the Chief Executive and all the members of the Legislative Council by universal suffrage. (BL Articles 45; 68; Annexes I and II)

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