Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has agreed to temporarily suspend a visa-waiver program for citizens from eight European countries due to growing concerns over the spread of Covid-19.
European visitors in Hoi An Town. Vietnam has suspended a visa-waiver program for citizens from eight European countries
At a Cabinet meeting on March 9, the Government leader approved a proposal from the national steering committee for Covid-19 infection prevention and control to apply the suspension policy to citizens of Denmark, Norway, Finland, Sweden, the United Kingdom, Germany, France and Spain, the local media reported.
The decision was made after Vietnam recorded an additional 14 cases last weekend, of whom 11 had entered the country from Europe.
The steering committee had earlier proposed the Government suspend the unilateral visa waiver program for citizens from the European Union, the United Kingdom and countries that are not members of the European Union and have registered over 500 infection cases in total or over 50 new cases per day. The committee had also suggested the denial of visas for foreigners who showed Covid-19 symptoms.
Vietnam suspended the visa waiver program for South Koreans from February 29 and for Italians from March 3 to contain the spread of the disease.
The country has reported 31 Covid-19 cases so far, including 16 people who have fully recovered from the disease. All 15 active cases, with five Vietnamese and 10 foreigners, are being treated at local medical centers.
Ministry orders tighter control of entry via border gates
Foreigners fill in health declaration forms at Noi Bai Airport in Hanoi
The Ministry of Transport has ordered its affiliates to strengthen the control of entry into Vietnam via border gates in an attempt to contain the spread of the acute respiratory disease caused by the SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19).
Those agencies need to guide all people entering Vietnam to fill in the compulsory electronic health declaration.
Airlines must inform all passengers, both Vietnamese and foreigners, on the requirement to make health declarations before entering Vietnam, starting from 6:00 am on March 7.
Airports are also requested to work with health authorities to zone off areas for health declaration and examination, as well as notify foreign airlines operating flights from/to Vietnam.
Transport firms and drivers must ask passengers to report their health conditions in the e-health declaration forms before departing for and entering Vietnam, as well as to closely follow regulations on COVID-19 prevention and control by Vietnamese authorities.
According to the national steering committee for COVID-19 prevention and control, 106,355 infection cases have been reported around the world, including 3,600 deaths, in 102 countries and territories. There are more than 1,000 new cases each day, and the number could rise slightly in the next few days.
As of 8pm of March 8, Vietnam had confirmed 30 infection cases, including 16 already having recovered. The 14 latest cases, including five Vietnamese and nine foreigners, have been in quarantine. SGT/VNN/VNA
Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has agreed to suspend visa-free entry for overseas Vietnamese (OVs) from countries whose citizens have visa-free entry unilaterally halted, firstly the Republic of Korea and COVID-19-hit nations.
Vietnam’s immigration laws will undergo a radical shake-up this summer in an effort to widen the doors for tourists while protecting the country from foreign criminals and illegal workers.