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1.8% inflation in October

Overall consumer prices rose 1.8% in October year-on-year, smaller than the 4.4% increase in September, the Census & Statistics Department announced today.   Netting out the effects of the Government's one-off relief measures, the underlying inflation rate was 1.7%, slightly less than September's 1.8%.   Compared with October last year, price increases were recorded for electricity, gas and water; clothing and footwear; meals out and takeaway food; basic food; alcoholic drinks and tobacco; transport; miscellaneous services, miscellaneous goods and housing.   On the other hand, a year-on-year decrease in price was recorded for durable goods.    The Government said that underlying consumer price inflation remained moderate in October.   The year-on-year increase in food prices showed some moderation, though remained relatively fast. Prices of clothing and footwear continued to record a visible increase, while those of energy-related items rose sharply. Price pressur

4 virus cases found in restricted areas

The Government announced that the compulsory testing exercises and enforcement operations for the restricted areas in Hung Hom, Mong Kok and Quarry Bay finished today with four preliminary positive COVID-19 cases found.   After the compulsory testing exercises, people in the restricted areas who can present SMS notifications with negative test results or are wearing wristbands as proof of having undergone testing can leave the areas.    The Government exercised the power under the Prevention & Control of Disease (Compulsory Testing for Certain Persons) Regulation on February 7 to make restriction-testing declarations, requiring people within the two restricted areas to stay in their premises and undergo compulsory testing.   They had to stay in their homes until everyone in the two areas was tested and the results were mostly ascertained.    Additionally, the Government issued compulsory testing notices to those who had been at these buildings for more than two hours from January 25 to February 7 to undergo compulsory testing before February 9 even if they were not in the restricted areas when the declaration took effect.    It set up temporary specimen collection stations at the restricted areas and requested people subject to mandatory testing to have their combined nasal and throat swab samples collected for COVID-19 testing.   About 370 residents in the Hung Hom restricted area, 1,140 in the Mong Kok one and 860 in Quarry Bay were tested.    Enforcement actions, carried out immediately after the compulsory testing exercises, verified that all people in the restricted areas were tested.    Meanwhile, the Government assigned staff to visit about 1,218 households in the three restricted areas, of which 181 did not answer the door. Some of them are possibly vacant units.    Those who did not answer the door are urged to contact the Government to arrange testing as soon as possible.
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124 COVID-19 cases reported

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