A reader dropped a note to a Chinese publication that was referring to Hong Kong-based SCMP that indicates that China is likely to keep its borders closed for international arrivals until mid-2022.
The country won’t reach herd-immunity through vaccinations before mid-2022 and likely won’t allow international arrivals without quarantine until then to prevent sparks in imported Covid-19 cases.
Here’s an excerpt from the SCMP:
This came as the government said the pandemic was still serious, and a leading health expert said herd immunity was unlikely to be achieved before the middle of 2022.
Keeping the disease under control was one of the priorities for 2021, the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) said in its annual report released on Friday, and preventing imported cases from sparking local outbreaks was “the priority among the priorities”
“We estimate it will be the middle of next year at the earliest and the end of next year at the latest before 70 to 80 per cent [the threshold needed to achieve herd immunity] of the population has been inoculated,” he told China News Service.
While the approval of other vaccines – Beijing has so far given the green light to four products, all of them Chinese – would help with production issues, reaching herd immunity would also depend on support from the public, he said.
There is a travel bubble in the works between China, Hong Kong, and Macau that may be announced in the next three months or so. These proposed bubbles have often burst before taking effect, like what happened between Hong Kong and Singapore.
This means that neither Macao nor Hong Kong will reopen for international tourists before the Mainland does that is likely sometime in 2022.