The Macau SAR government is still studying the possibility of extending the effective period of COVID-19 virus tests from 7 days to 14 days, according to legislator and Vice President of the General Union of Macau Resident Associations (UGAMM), Ho Ion Sang.
The comments were made by Macau Chief Executive Ho Iat Seng during a closed door meeting with UGAMM at government headquarters on Thursday, with the UGAMM representative revealing extending the effective period of virus tests had been a key point of discussion.
“A lot of residents have urged us to extend the effective period of COVID-19 virus tests from the current seven days to 14 days, and we proposed this to the Chief Executive at the meeting,” Ho Ion Sang told media afterwards.
“The Chief Executive said the government was studying it as well. The Chief Executive also noted that we had passed through lots of difficulties to reach the current and stable situation in Macau, so we should be cautious on considering any extension.
“He hoped that residents could understand the government’s decisions and policies on preventive works.”
Currently, Macau residents and mainland Chinese visitors must hold negative virus test results obtained within the previous seven days to cross the borders between Macau and mainland China.
However, with visitation numbers still lower than had been hoped – Golden Week numbers fell 85.7% year-on-year – following the resumption of the Individual Visit Scheme, it has been suggested that the effort needed to enter Macau has reduced the willingness of people to do so.
This is also not the first time the government has mentioned extending the virus test period, but it has not yet reached final agreement with the mainland government.