3,000 restaurants on the brink of collapse

February 02, 2021 11:13
Photo: Reuters

Lunar New Year is traditionally a boom time for restaurants in Hong Kong, but not this year amid the ongoing pandemic and social distancing rules.

The industry is going to miss out HK$7 billion in February after the government extended social distancing measures to cover the holiday period, Simon Wong, the president of the Federation of Restaurants and Related Trades said on Tuesday, according to RTHK reports.

Capacity restrictions, as well as the ban on servicing dine-in customers after 6pm since December have put operators in a very difficult situation.

Social distancing regulations will remain in place until February 17, the sixth day of the Lunar New Year, the government announced earlier.

Wong warned that some 3,000 restaurants were facing a real threat of being forced to close down.

While there are crowds on the street and in the shopping malls, "it is complete nonsense to lock down at night and allow people to dine out during the day," Wong said.

Officials said they were taking more aggressive action to curb the spread of Covid-19, including the adoption of stricter testing rules in the hope of bringing the pandemic under control.

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