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EPD takes action on concrete plants

The Environmental Protection Department said it does not tolerate concrete batching plants operating without a licence and will make every effort to stop any illegal operations.   The department made the statement in response to media reports yesterday of a concrete batching plant at 20 Tung Yuen Street in Yau Tong continuing to operate without holding a valid Specified Process Licence (SPL).   The department has been closely monitoring the operation of two plants, both owned by China Concrete. The other plant is at 22 Tung Yuen Street in Yau Tong.   Regarding the plant at 20 Tung Yuen Street, the Air Pollution Control Appeal Board dismissed an appeal lodged by China Concrete against the department’s refusal of its application for renewal of an SPL for the plant on November 22.   Under the Air Pollution Control (Specified Processes) Regulations, the plant’s SPL ceased to be valid with immediate effect and the department issued a letter requesting that all works be halte

Social distancing rules to be relaxed

The Government announced that it will further relax social distancing measures based on the vaccine bubble concept from June 24 to July 7.   The existing requirements and restrictions applicable to types A and B catering business will be maintained, while the maximum number of customers will be relaxed to 75% of the premises’ normal seating capacity for type C catering business.   For type D premises, the vaccination requirements for customers will be lowered to two-thirds of the people at the same table having received the first dose of COVID-19 vaccine. The maximum number of customers will be relaxed to 100% of the normal seating capacity, with the maximum number of customers at the same table increased to 12 and the maximum number of banquet participants increased to 180.   For bars and pubs, if all staff have received the first dose of COVID-19 vaccine, the maximum number of customers will be relaxed to 75% of the normal seating capacity, and the maximum number of same-table customers will be increased to four. The opening hours will remain the same.   If all staff have been fully vaccinated for 14 days, bars and pubs may operate every day from 5am to 3.59am on the subsequent day. The maximum number of customers will be relaxed to 100% of the normal seating capacity, while the maximum number of customers at the same table will be increased to eight.   Restrictions on customer capacity at party rooms, clubs or nightclubs, karaoke establishments and mahjong-tin kau premises will be eased given all staff have received the first dose of the vaccine, the Government explained.   In addition, live performances may take place in type D and a number of scheduled premises if the performers have received the first jab and adopted infection control measures like wearing masks during performances. Separately, fully vaccinated performers in theme parks can be exempted from wearing masks at outdoor performances.   All participants of a training group in a fitness centre can be exempted from wearing masks during exercise if everyone in the room has been fully vaccinated and adequate distance is maintained between each other.    The maximum number of people allowed in swimming pools will be 50% of capacity. If all staff and customers have completed their vaccine course, the cap will be relaxed to 100% of the capacity.   The Government noted that the relaxation measures are also applicable to relevant facilities in exhibition centres, hotels and private clubhouses.   The current mandatory mask-wearing requirement, and the prohibition on group gatherings of more than four people in public places, unless exempted, will be extended during the period, the Government added.

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