Updated at 6.26pm: Hong Kong might resume live chicken imports from the mainland by next Tuesday at the earliest, Chinese language newspapers reported on Wednesday. Oriental Daily reported that a top mainland official, Li Changjiang, would meet Secretary of Health, Welfare and Food Yeoh Eng-kiong on Thursday. They will discuss the resumption of live chicken imports to the territory. Apple Daily reported that 6,000 live chickens would be imported from China each day starting from next Tuesday. Thorough inspections will be carried out before chickens are transported to wet markets. A government spokesman said the quantity of initial imports would be low. This was because it was necessary initially to assess the state of the market, the paper said. Ming Pao said the imports might rise to 30,000-40,000 chickens a day - beginning from May 12. The government would announce the full details of the import plans on Thursday, Apple Daily said. This will be the first time live chickens have been imported from China for three months - since the avian flu outbreak at the beginning of 2004.