Hong Kong Pernod Ricard Executives Ordered to Vacate City
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Major Spirits Company Executives Ordered to Vacate This City Due to COVID-19

Hong Kong

People lie in hospital beds outside Caritas Medical Centre on Feb. 15 in Hong Kong, as the city faces its worst COVID-19 coronavirus wave to date. (Photo by PETER PARKS/AFP via Getty Images)

As Hong Kong has implemented its strictest social distancing measures yet in the wake of the Omicron variant of COVID-19 during the past few months, beverage giant Pernod Ricard asked its senior executive staff members to temporarily relocate outside of the city, the Financial Times reported Monday.

“All senior management were asked to relocate temporarily … [late] last year,” the Financial Times said a source told it.

In following Beijing’s “dynamic zero-Covid” policy, Hong Kong has closed bars and nightclubs; banned dine-in services between 6 p.m. and 4:59 a.m.; banned flights from nine countries including Australia, Canada, France, the U.K. and the U.S.; and implemented a mandatory 14-day hotel quarantine upon arrival in Hong Kong from overseas countries.

The flight ban, in particular, would be troublesome for Pernod Ricard executives, who are expected to be able to visit the company’s headquarters in Paris.

“You need to travel to look after clients. When the rest of the world is opening up, it’s becoming difficult to justify [being based in Hong Kong],” the Financial Times said it was told by the same source.

Hong Kong announced over the weekend that it would be setting up joint task forces with mainland Chinese authorities to manage the growing cases, a sign that even harsher restrictions may be forthcoming.

Hong Kong reported 2,701 coronavirus infections Monday, nearly double the daily number of cases last week.

Last week, the Financial Times reported that the Mandarin Oriental hotel group also asked top executives to work outside of Hong Kong because of the pandemic restrictions.

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David Morrow is the Editor In Chief of Whiskey Raiders and has been with the company since September 2021. David has worked in journalism since 2015 and has had bylines at Sports Illustrated, Def Pen, the Des Moines Register and the Quad City Times. David holds a Bachelor of Arts in Communication from Saint Louis University and a Master of Science in Journalism from Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism. When he’s not tasting the newest exciting whiskey releases, David enjoys spending time with his wife and dog, watching sports and traveling.