No government is well enough prepared for a flu pandemic, not even Hong Kong's, influenza experts said as they urged authorities in East Asia to take more action. At the end of a two-day meeting in Hong Kong, the Asia-Pacific Advisory Committee on Influenza hammered out a consensus statement encouraging all countries in the region to continue working on pandemic preparedness in line with the World Health Organisation's influenza pandemic plan. Masato Tashiro, director of Tokyo's WHO Collaborating Centre for Reference and Research on Influenza, said Hong Kong could be the best-prepared place for an avian flu outbreak because it had put in place control measures since H5N1 first jumped the species barrier in the city in 1997. But it would be difficult to say the same for a human pandemic, he said. 'I think Hong Kong's surveillance system and medical health-care services work very well, but nevertheless you had Sars and you had difficulty controlling Sars quickly. 'Influenza may be more serious because it has a shorter incubation period and within the incubation period the virus may be shed and transferred to others. Control of pandemic influenza is much more difficult than Sars.' He said the latest research in Japan had revealed that the flu viruses had not shown any significant resistance to the drug oseltamivir, known as Tamiflu. Japan has used the most Tamiflu since it was marketed in 2002. Lance Jennings, of the University of Otago in New Zealand, the chairman of the advisory committee, said not only H5N1 but other viral strains could pose a pandemic risk. The panel of experts urged health authorities to stockpile antiviral drugs, increase yearly flu vaccination coverage and enhance surveillance measures.