Vietnam to ease restrictions on travellers from Japan

21:16 | 15/06/2020

As a careful attempt to slowly revive Asian economic co-operation, particularly so in business and tourism, the first trial international flight departing Japan and landing in Vietnam, which will carry 250 business travellers, will take place at the end of June.

vietnam to ease restrictions on travellers from japan
Passengers conducting health declaration as immigrating into Vietnam

Vietnam and Japan have agreed to a trial project in which a chartered flight for Japanese business people will be allowed to land in the Southeast Asian nation, according to Nikkei Asian Review.

Some 250 business travellers, who pass the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test before departure will be carried on the trial flight.

Previously, in late March, Vietnam suspended entry for all foreign nationals. The Japanese government expects Vietnam to accept travellers from Japan who undergo PCR testing before departure and will work on raising its PCR testing capacity.

Vietnam is willing to accept Japanese business travellers as it goes about resuming economic activities, a source in Japan's Foreign Ministry told Nikkei Asian Review. Most of the travellers on the maiden flight will be business people newly assigned by their Japanese companies to posts in Vietnam.

Japan will also consider relaxing entry restrictions for Vietnamese as it looks to fill private-sector jobs with Vietnamese technical trainees.

Several days ago, Vietnam’s government also announced to consider resuming flights to some other Asian destinations, including Tokyo, Seoul, Guangzhou, Taiwan, and Laos.

The consideration is based on the condition of places that have had no new COVID-19 cases for at least 30 days, the Government Office said in a statement last week, citing a prime ministerial directive. The flights should undertake strict anti-pandemic measures in line with the Health Ministry’s regulations.

Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan are also considering the re-opening of international flights with Vietnam, as foreign media reported.

Japan has banned entry by foreigners but is considering allowing business travellers from Australia, New Zealand, Thailand, and Vietnam who tested negative for COVID-19 both while leaving their home country and arriving in Japan, said Asahi Shimbun, a Japanese national newspaper.

Elsewhere, South Korea is planning a limited resumption of international flights to certain destinations including Vietnam, which has garnered international acclaim for its effective dealing of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Meanwhile, Taiwan’s Minister of Health and Welfare, Chen Shih-Chung said last month that only a few countries could meet its requirements for resuming flights based on objective data. Of which, New Zealand and Vietnam are the most likely countries to open up in the first wave, Taiwan News reported.

Though Vietnam has yet to open its doors to international visitors, the National Steering Committee for COVID-19 Prevention and Control had said at a meeting on May 28 that the tourism industry could pilot a plan to welcome foreign tourists to island destinations on a trial basis with strict safety measures in place.

Phu Quoc, Vietnam's largest island in the Mekong Delta province of Kien Giang, was on the list of priority destinations.

Nguyen Huong

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