The Philippine government is mulling over lifting the travel ban in Hong Kong and Macau amid the COVID-19 threat.
This is amid the call of Filipinos in Hong Kong to lift the travel ban in the said country.
The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said the Inter-Agency Task Force on the Management of Infectious Disease will release an update on the issue by Tuesday (February 18).
“Pag-uusapan iyong mga issues about Hong Kong and even Macau, so baka bukas po mayroong developments on the particular issue (They will discuss the issues about Hong Kong and even Macau so there might be developments on the particular issue by tomorrow),” according to DFA Asec. Ed Meñez.
The Philippine government already lifted the travel ban in Taiwan after it drew criticisms from the Taiwanese government and several Filipinos in the said country.
Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said there are things to consider if the government will lift the travel ban in Hong Kong and Macau.
“Now we’re assessing travel ban on Macau and Hong Kong, so depende, kasi ang mahalaga sa atin, kay Presidente, iyong safety ng mga kababayan natin (It depends because what is important to us, to the President is the safety of our fellowmen),” he said.
Panelo also said the travel ban in Taiwan was lifted due to how strict their protocols are and the assurance that the Filipinos in Taiwan are safe amid the virus scare.—AAC (with reports from Rosalie Coz)