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|Vietnam halts its visa exemption programme for eight European nations. Photo: Vietnam Insider|
Accordingly, from March 12, travellers from these countries will have to apply for visas issued by the overseas Vietnamese embassies and consulates.
In addition, citizens from countries with more than 500 confirmed COVID-19 cases or more than 50 new cases a day may also expect visa-free travel to be suspended.
Vietnam has announced this decision to the relevant countries and will continue to liaise with other nations, international organisations, and partners in preventing and controlling the disease.
This is the next measure in the Vietnamese government’s efforts to enhance the containment of COVID-19.
Vietnam has temporarily suspended visa waivers for Korean nationals from February 29 and Italian citizens from March 3 as these countries have seen the stronger outbreak of COVID-19.
As of March 11, the novel coronavirus has reached 119 countries and territories across the globe. At the time, Vietnam confirmed a total of 39 COVID-19 cases, 16 of which have been cured and discharged from hospital.
Starting from March 10, all Vietnamese citizens and foreigners who are currently living in Vietnam, or are entering the country, are required to complete health declarations via a website or mobile apps.
Developed by the Ministry of Information and Communications and the Ministry of Health in collaboration with domestic tech firms, the NCOVI app was designed for Vietnamese and Vietnam Health Declaration is for internationals. App users can update and keep track of their health status on a daily basis, in addition to reporting suspected cases of infection in their neighbourhood.
Paper-form health declarations are also available for arrivals.
Those with symptoms like coughing, fever, shortness of breath, and fatigue are required to be examined and quarantined.