HANOI, Feb 16 (Reuters) – Vietnam on Wednesday finalised a plan to fully reopen its borders to foreign tourists from next month, as it looks to accelerate its economic recovery and revive a battered tourism sector.
“The approval is in accordance with the government’s new responses to the pandemic, which are adapting safely and flexibly and controlling the virus effectively,” the government said in a statement.
Starting March 15, visitors to Vietnam will still have to undergo a one-day quarantine and test negative for COVID-19 before departure and upon arrival.
Vietnam will reopen three months earlier than planned even as coronavirus cases surge. It follows similar reopening steps taken by other Southeast Asian countries like Thailand and the Philippines, where the Omicron COVID-19 variant has caused a recent spike in new infections, but fewer hospitalisations and deaths than previous variants.
(Reporting by Phuong Nguyen; Editing by Kanupriya Kapoor and Bernadette Baum)
Photo – A man walks past a street mural with COVID-19 theme, in Hanoi, Vietnam. EPA-EFE/LUONG THAI LINH