This has closed all doors to what medical experts called a loophole and a possible source of imported COVID-19 cases, causing this new wave of the virus.

According to local media, crew change had previously taken plance with no restrictions in local waters of Hong Kong, including vessels with no cargo operations. The leeway granted to around 10,000 seafarers exempted them from mandatory 14-day quarantine. However, their movement was restricted to their ships, airport, and the accommodation.

After this announcement, seafarer will have to stay onboard while on Hong Kong waters. In addition, the incoming crew must present certificates showing a negative result on COVID-19 tests. As for the outgoing crew, they will have to remain onboard until point-to-point transportation is provided.

On July 26, Hong Kong had reported 128 new infections. About 25 cases were imported through crew from Britain, Indonesia, Philippines, and other locations.