Ministries support resumption of international flights next week
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A Vietnam Airlines aircraft lands at Tan Son Nhat International Airport in Ho Chi Minh City, June 15, 2020. Photo by VnExpress/Quynh Tran
Several ministries have voiced support for the Ministry of Transport’s recommendation to resume international flights on December 15, saying the high vaccination rates have basically brought Covid-19 under control.
Deputy Minister of Health Do Xuan Tuyen said at a government meeting Thursday that 97 percent of the country’s population aged 18 and above have got at least one dose of a Covid vaccine and around 70 percent are fully vaccinated.
Of people in the 12-17 age group, 55.7 percent have received at least one shot.
So international flights could resume especially since a lot of Vietnamese citizens living abroad await repatriation and foreign investors want to come to seek business opportunities, he said.
The foreign affairs and defense ministries also agreed, and called for careful preparations to ensure things go smoothly.
The culture, sports and tourism ministry said since the country reopened to international tourism last month, 1,179 visitors have arrived on commercial flights, and none has been detected with Covid.
Deputy Prime Minister Pham Binh Minh said the resumption of international commercial flights has become necessary, especially as travel demand is high at the end of the year.
Deputy PM Vu Duc Dam on Wednesday instructed the health ministry to issue new guidelines allowing fully vaccinated passengers to self-isolate.
Currently the ministry requires foreign arrivals to quarantine for seven days at designated accommodations and their own expense.
The transport ministry has called for resuming flights starting with nine destinations: San Francisco or Los Angeles (the U.S.), Singapore, Bangkok (Thailand), Phnom Penh (Cambodia), Vientiane (Laos), Beijing (China), Tokyo (Japan), Seoul (South Korea), and Taipei (Taiwan).
In Januarym it wants to add Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia), Hong Kong, Paris (France), Frankfurt (Germany), Sydney (Australia), and Moscow (Russia).
Vietnam grounded international flights in March last year, allowing in only its nationals, foreign experts, investors, and highly-skilled workers for a long time by special flights.