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Trade and Industry Department The Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region
Brand Hong Kong - Asia world city

24-hour hotline : 23 922 922

e-mail address :

Ref : TRA 202/090

30 April 2009

Dear Sirs,

Notice to Exporters : 

Series 1 (USA) No. 3/2009

Series 2 (EU) No. 4/2009

Series 3 (Countries other than USA and EU) No. 2/2009

Certificate of Origin Circular No. 2/2009

Certificate of Preference Circular No. 1/2009

Textiles Trader Registration Circular No. 2/2009

Import Licensing (Textiles) Circular No. 2/2009

Commercial Information Circular No. 217/2009

Strategic Trade Control Circular No. 5/2009

Rough Diamond Trader Registration Circular No. 3/2009

Notice to Service Suppliers No. 1/2009

Human Swine Influenza

This notice-cum-trade circular provides general information on human swine influenza (swine flu).

Human Swine Influenza

  1. Human swine influenza (swine flu) is originally known to circulate among pig populations. The swine flu viruses do occasionally infect human beings. In this present international swine flu outbreak, human-to-human transmission has occurred.


  1. The symptoms of human swine influenza are expected to be similar to regular human seasonal influenza and include fever, lethargy, lack of appetite and coughing. Some people infected with swine flu may also have a runny nose, sore throat, nausea, vomiting and diarrhoea.

Mode of transmission

  1. Human-to-human transmission of swine flu is thought to occur in the same way as seasonal flu is spread among people, mainly through coughing or sneezing. People may also become infected by touching objects soiled with flu viruses and then touching their nose or mouth.
  2. Swine flu has not been shown to be transmissible to people through eating properly handled and cooked pork or pork products. Cooking pork to an internal temperature of 70oC (160oF) kills the swine flu virus.


  1. Since H1N1 swine flu viruses are very different from human H1N1 viruses, vaccines for human seasonal flu will not provide protection against H1N1 swine flu viruses.
  2. People who develop flu symptoms should put on a mask and consult a doctor as soon as possible. Those who have been to affected places or been exposed to sick persons should tell the doctor the travel and contact history. Antiviral agents can reduce the severity and duration of swine flu but must be used under doctor’s prescription. It is important for people not to self-medicate.


  1. The following general precautionary measures are also advised :
  1. Keep hands clean and wash hands properly. Alcohol-based handrub is also effective when hands are not visibly soiled.
  • When to wash hands :
  • Before and after touching eyes, noses and mouth.
  • Before eating and preparing food.
  • After using the toilet.
  • After coughing or sneezing.
  • After handling soiled articles.
  • After touching public equipment.
  • Before and after coming in contact with patients.
  • Tips for good handwashing :
  • Wet hands under running water.
  • Apply liquid soap and rub hands together to make a soapy lather.
  • Away from the running water, rub the front and back of hands. Massage all the finger tips properly including the thumb, the web of the fingers, around and under the nails. Do this for at least 20 seconds.
  • Rinse hands thoroughly under running water.
  • Dry hands thoroughly with either a clean cotton towel, a paper towel, or a hand dryer.
  • The cleaned hands should not touch the water tap directly again. The tap may be turned off by using the towel wrapping the faucet, or after splashing water to clean the faucet.
  1. Avoid touching mouth, nose or eyes. Germs spread that way.
  2. Wash hands with liquid soap promptly if they are contaminated by respiratory secretions, e.g. after sneezing or coughing.
  3. Cover nose and mouth when sneezing or coughing.
  4. Do not spit. Always wrap nasal and mouth discharges with tissue paper, and dispose of the tissue paper properly in a lidded rubbish bin.
  5. If you develop symptoms of influenza, seek medical advice promptly, wear a mask and take rest at home.
  1. Avoid travelling to affected places unless it is absolute necessary if such a visit is unavoidable :
  1. During the trip : put on a mask and do not have contact with sick people.
  2. After returning : pay close attention to your health and wear masks for 7 days. Seek medical consultation from public clinics or hospitals right away if fever or influenza-like symptoms appear and report the travel history.

Further information on human swine influenza

CHP's swine flu website at"16615

Department of Health's travel health service website at

World Health Organization's swine flu website at


  1. For further information on the swine flu, please call the Centre for Health Protection (CHP)'s 24-hour hotline at 2125 1111, or visit the following websites :
  2. For enquiries on this notice-cum-trade circular, please contact Miss Janice LAU on 2398 5318.

Yours faithfully,

(Mrs Louisa CHEUNG)

for Director-General of Trade and Industry