Caixin
Feb 23, 2021 07:33 AM
CHINA

Hong Kong’s Lam Gets Sinovac Shot as City Prepares Inoculations

Carrie Lam receives the Sinovac vaccine shot Monday
Carrie Lam receives the Sinovac vaccine shot Monday

What’s new: Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam led dozens of senior government officials and lawmakers receiving Covid-19 vaccinations Monday in public to encourage participation as the city prepares for a mass rollout.

Lam and the officials were given a shot developed by Sinovac Biotech Ltd. in Hong Kong’s main library. Lam said she felt good after the injection and called for the public to “come forward and receive the shot” to “help Hong Kong to resume travel and economic activity as soon as possible.”

Hong Kong is set to begin vaccination of the public Feb. 26, starting with people older than 60 and front-line workers.

What’s the context: Lam joined a number of government leaders, including U.S. President Joe Biden and Indonesian President Joko Widodo, getting a shot publicly to encourage widespread inoculation.

Hong Kong received 1 million Sinovac doses Friday, a day after the city approved the shot for emergency use. Another 1 million doses of BioNTech vaccines are expected to arrive by the end of this month, the city government said.

But the city faces challenges persuading enough people to take the shots. A survey last summer by the Chinese University of Hong Kong found that just 37% of Hong Kongers wanted to get a Covid-19 vaccine — much lower than the 80% that experts say is required for herd immunity.

Hong Kong, with a population of 7.5 million, reported fewer than 10,868 total cases and 197 deaths as of Monday.

Quick Takes are condensed versions of China-related stories for fast news you can use. To read the full story in Chinese, click here.

Contact reporter Han Wei (weihan@caixin.com) and editor Bob Simison (bobsimison@caixin.com).

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