CHINA / SOCIETY
Pilot travel bubble across the Taiwan Straits postponed as cases increase in the island of Taiwan
Published: May 09, 2021 11:43 PM
 
People wearing face masks go shopping at a market in Taipei, Taiwan, on March 1, 2021. Photo: CFP

People wearing face masks go shopping at a market in Taipei, Taiwan, on March 1, 2021. Photo: CFP


A pilot travel bubble for residents in the island of Taiwan going to Fujian Province, in the Chinese mainland, was postponed on Saturday due to rising cases of COVID-19 in the island, according to the Fujian leading group for epidemic prevention and control. 

Given the number of newly confirmed local cases in the island of Taiwan in recent days, currently there is not a suitable condition to carry out the pilot scheme as scheduled, read an online announcement from the Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macao Affairs Office of the Fujian Provincial People's Government.

More than 10 new local confirmed cases were reported in Taiwan, from April 30 to May 7. According to the requirements of the pilot travel bubble plan, if more than 10 local confirmed cases occur in the island of Taiwan within 14 consecutive days, the channel will be suspended for the whole Taiwan region.

"The Chinese mainland will closely follow the situation of the epidemic on the island of Taiwan and open a convenient channel at a proper time in accordance with relevant regulations," an officia explained in an interview with local media, New Fujian.

On April 29, Fujian issued a notice saying that the province's plan is to carry out a pilot, starting from May 10, to facilitate the entry to the province to residents of the island of Taiwan.

The measures that include a two-day medical observation in an assigned facility, were aimed to the residents of the island of Taiwan who are in urgent need to travel to Fujian for work, business or exchange activities by air and sea across the Taiwan Straits.

Netizens on Sina Weibo expressed their concerns about carrying out the pilot questioning the real number of COVID-19 cases in the island of Taiwan. Some netizens think that the provincial government should cancel the pilot travel plan.

The pilot plan, which was based on the actual situation and exchange needs across the Taiwan Straits, was thought to be necessary and feasible after careful research and scientific evaluation, according to local officials.


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