HONG KONG: Macao will shut almost all commercial and industrial businesses including its casinos for one week from Monday, as authorities race to curb a surge of COVID-19 infections in the world’s biggest gambling hub.
Essential services including hotels, supermarkets and pharmacies will however remain open, city officials said as they announced the measures at a press conference on Saturday.
The announcement came as Macau reported 71 new COVID cases on Saturday (Jul 9), taking the total to 1,374 since mid-June. More than 17,000 people are in quarantine, authorities have said.
Local authorities have added two hotels in popular casino resorts to be used as COVID-19 medical facilities from Friday as they try to increase capacity to handle the surge of infections.
More than 90 per cent of Macau’s residents are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 but this is the first time the city has had to grapple with the fast-spreading Omicron variant.