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FS paves way to green, digital future

A number of initiatives and measures aimed at accelerating high-quality development were announced in today’s 2024-25 Budget, with the Government emphasising a move towards a green future and digitalisation.   Explaining that high-quality development spurs ongoing economic innovation and growth whilst conserving the natural environment, Financial Secretary Paul Chan said Hong Kong must pursue opportunities through leveraging its advantages under “one country, two systems”, namely those of enjoying strong support at a national level and being closely connected to other parts of the world.   He stressed that green development involves huge business opportunities and financing needs, as governments and businesses around the world pursue carbon neutrality and green transformation. In addition, he said digitalisation has become a new driving force for economic development, empowering enterprises to enhance efficiency, boost their competitiveness and achieve new growth.   Introdu

Vaccine booster plan expanded

The Government announced today that people who have received two doses of the Sinovac vaccine with the second one received six months ago, can make reservations for the third dose of a COVID-19 vaccine from November 23.     They can also collect same-day tickets and get the third jab at the community vaccination centres (CVCs) without prior booking from the same day.   People under certain groups have been arranged to receive a third dose of the COVID-19 vaccine on a priority basis since November 11 and the operation has been smooth.   After assessing the capacity and service demand of the vaccination facilities, the Government has decided to expand the arrangements to cover more eligible people, irrespective of whether they belong to the priority groups, to enhance protection.   Before making an appointment, members of the public should take note of a minimum 14-day interval between a COVID-19 vaccination and any other vaccinations, including the seasonal flu vaccine.   The third-dose vaccination arrangements remain unchanged for immunocompromised people such as cancer patients, organ transplant recipients, advanced-stage HIV patients and people taking active immunosuppressive drugs. They should be administered the third dose at least four weeks after the second dose.   For people aged 18 or above in the higher risk populations who have received two doses of the BioNTech vaccine, the third dose should be administered at least six months from the second dose.   This high-risk group includes people aged 60 or above, healthcare workers and those with chronic illnesses, and workers at an increased risk of COVID-19 exposure and transmission due to their occupational setting.   Members of the public can make reservations for the third jab at CVCs or Hospital Authority designated clinics through the COVID-19 Vaccination Programme website.   They can also collect same-day tickets and get vaccinated at the CVCs without prior booking. Alternatively, they may make a reservation for the Sinovac vaccination through private doctors or clinics enrolled in the vaccination programme.   Additionally, patients and visitors of public hospitals can receive the BioNTech vaccination without prior booking at nine COVID-19 vaccination stations.
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