Vietnam yet to open door to all foreign tourists hinh anh 1Foreign visitors explore sand dunes in Binh Thuan province before COVID-19 broke out (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) – The National Steering Committee for COVID-19 Prevention and Control reached agreement at a meeting on May 28 that the country should not open door to all foreign tourists at this time, as risks of transmission from outside remain.

The committee’s members said only visitors from countries where there have been no new cases for at least 30 days should be allowed to enter Vietnam.

Deputy Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Trinh Thi Thuy reported that localities and travel businesses have responded warmly to the domestic tourism stimulus programme, offering numerous discounts and new products. Hotel occupancy rates have reached 80-90 percent and even 100 percent in some places, which are good signs for domestic tourism.

According to the deputy minister, the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism has coordinated with travel associations to prepare plans to receive international tourists once the pandemic is contained, but the focus in the immediate future is on domestic tourism.

Discussing the entry of foreign investors, experts, technicians, business managers and skilled workers, the steering committee underlined the responsibility of People’s Committees of provinces and cities in approving the list of such people submitted by companies. The list will then be sent to the Ministry of Public Security for visa consideration.

People’s Committees of provinces and cities are also responsible for designating the facilities for quarantining those foreign experts following their entry into Vietnam. Family members of those experts, especially children who have earlier studied in Vietnam, are also allowed to enter the country, the steering committee said.

The steering committee also required rapid-response teams of the Health Ministry to intensify inspections of concentrated quarantine facilities, flight crews and ship crews as part of preparations to receive foreign experts.

Foreign students entering Vietnam by land will be quarantined in concentrated facilities run by the military.

Vietnam has recorded no community transmission of COVID-19 for 42 consecutive days since April 16. The total number of cases in the country stands at 327 as of May 28 morning, including 187 imported cases who were quarantined upon their arrival, posing no risk of community infection.

As many as 278 out of 327 patients have recovered, accounting for 85 percent of the total, and there has been no death./.