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Vietnam yet to resume international tourism: PM

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Vietnamese citizens are seen going through procedures at Washington Dulles International Airport in the United States on May 15 before returning home. Vietnam has yet to open its doors for international travelers amid the novel coronavirus – PHOTO: VNA

HCMC – Vietnam has yet to open its doors for international travelers amid the novel coronavirus while the country is trying to boost domestic tourism, said Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc.

The Cabinet leader was speaking at a meeting on the prevention and control of Covid-19 infections in Hanoi on Friday, reported the Vietnam News Agency.

Phuc ordered the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism work with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Health Ministry, among others, to promote tourism, including steps to open doors for international travelers if certain conditions are met.

Those tourists who come from the countries and territories which have brought the pandemic under control may be the first to enter Vietnam after a period of suspension, according to the prime minister.

The ministries should also put forward a proposal which details the period of time and the principles to phase out restrictions on entry and exit imposed as a result of the coronavirus crisis.

They should suggest steps to resume a number of international flights which are to arrange visits among family members, and encourage trade, investment and tourism activities on a bilateral basis.

The prime minister called for continued efforts among police, military and healthcare workers to scrutinize all travelers coming to Vietnam.

These incoming travelers will be placed under quarantine for a fortnight’s time to prevent community spread of the virus, he said.

Investors, technical experts, skilled workers, business managers, public servants on duty, and foreign students studying in Vietnam are allowed to enter the country.

Phuc asked those officials in charge to keep a close watch on the people who travel through road border crossings.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs should recommend overseas Vietnamese people to refrain from travelling home and take preventative measures in their host countries.

However, Vietnamese students under 18 years of age, those people who have gone overseas for medical treatment, tourists, those visiting their relatives, and those having finished their business trips will be eligible to return home.

Competent authorities are told to have a roadmap for the safe repatriation of Vietnamese citizens stranded abroad in a transparent manner.

Notably, the prime minister assigned the Health Ministry to come up with a strategy for Covid-19 infection prevention and control for a new and long-term period, which should ensure public health safety and economic sustainability.

Vietnam has had 30 consecutive days without a Covid-19 infection among the community.

Its last infection detected in the community, identified as 16-year-old Vietnamese girl from the northern province of Ha Giang, tagged Patient No.268, was on April 16. She had been under quarantine since April 7.

Since then, the Southeast Asian country has reported 44 imported cases, who are Vietnamese returnees, with Friday, May 15, setting a record daily increase of 25 infections from Russia and the United Arab Emirates.

The country’s infection tally stood at 314, with 260 recoveries and no death as of Saturday morning.

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