AFP

Vietnam to resume some international commercial flights 15 September 2020 - 18:00

Vietnam said Tuesday it will resume international commercial flights to and from six Asian destinations, months after a suspension due to the coronavirus.The communist nation of 95 million people has been widely lauded for its handling of the pandemic and went nearly 100 days without recording a locally transmitted infection until July.An outbreak that month in the beach resort of Danang put the country back on high alert, but it has once again gone almost two weeks without a locally transmitted case. According to a statement on a government website, flights in and out of the southern Chinese city of Guangzhou, Tokyo, Seoul and Taipei would resume Tuesday.From September 22, flights to and from Phnom Penh and Vientiane will also begin again, the statement said.However, those allowed to buy tickets will be limited to Vietnamese citizens, diplomats, foreign experts, investors, managers and their families.Anyone coming in will have to take a Covid test before boarding and on arrival.Vietnam suspended international commercial flights to and from China in February as Covid-19 quickly spread across the country.Most other international destinations were included in the suspension by March.A small number of foreign diplomats and business people have been allowed to enter Vietnam on repatriation and chartered flights, but were subject to a strict two-week quarantine in state facilities or in a government-chosen hotel.The government is now considering whether to shorten the quarantine period, the statement said.The announcement came as Hanoi authorities said they would allow bars and karaoke parlours to reopen on Wednesday after they were forced to close for the second time during the Danang outbreak.Vietnam has reported just 1063 cases and 35 deaths after an aggressive public health response involving mass quarantines and a robust track-and-trace regime.

Issue 86