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Friday, February 14, 2020, 22:33
CE announces HK$25-billion package to ease virus woes
By He Shusi
Friday, February 14, 2020, 22:33 By He Shusi

Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor (right) holds a press conference on a HK$25-billion relief package to help residents, medical workers and businesses affected by the coronavirus outbreak, Hong Kong, Feb 14, 2020. (EDMOND TANG / CHINA DAILY) 

HONG KONG - Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor on Friday announced a package of subsidies worth HK$25 billion for the relief of medical workers, business owners and underprivileged citizens hit by the fallout of the new coronavirus outbreak.

Carrie Lam said she hoped legislators would support the government in approving the funding request so that the proposed measures can be implemented as soon as possible

The package includes an extra appropriation of HK$4.7 billion for the Hospital Authority to ensure the adequate supply of protective gears and other equipment for frontline medical workers.

About 200,000 low-income households will each receive a special allowance of around HK$5,000.

READ MORE: Coronavirus: HK braces for possible community outbreak

For the city’s battered business sector, licensed travel agencies, restaurants, and all retailers will each be granted a one-off allowance of HK$80,000, while that for licensed vender will be HK$5,000. 

Families forced to delay moving into the new housing estates that will be used as temporary quarantine centers will each receive a one-off compensation of HK$6,000.

Lam said the government will seek the appropriation from the Finance Committee of the Legislative Council, which will hold a special meeting next week to process the request.

ALSO READ: HK reports first death from new coronavirus infection

She said she hoped legislators would support the government in approving the funding request so that the proposed measures can be implemented as soon as possible. 

Lam said the government will distribute around 1.6 million surgical masks received from donors to the needy through non-government organizations.

Lam said the government’s mask stockpile is sufficient to meet the demand of civil servants, cleaners and elderly homes for two months.

heshusi@chinadailyhk.com


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