According to data released on March 29 by the General Statistics Office (GSO), the number of foreign arrivals to the nation during the first quarter of the year stood at an estimated 48,000, representing a decline of roughly 99% compared to the same period from the previous year. The first quarter of the year witnessed the overall number of visitors from Asia make up 88.6% of the country’s total number of foreign arrivals, representing a year-on-year fall of 98% as visitor numbers from several major markets recorded a sharp drop.
The decline can primarily be attributed to the nation continuing to take COVID-19 preventive measures whilst not yet reopening its borders for international travelers.
Most notably, the number of international visitors arriving in the country mainly consists of foreign experts and technical workers who are working on various local projects.
Currently, the COVID-19 epidemic in the nation has largely been brought under control, with frontline workers now getting vaccinated.
Overseas Vietnamese repatriates Vietnam (Photo: VOV)
Relevant authorities have therefore been negotiating with international partners in order to quickly import the COVID-19 vaccine while also promoting the research and development of domestically produced vaccines in an effort to ensure a consistent supply source for the entire population as swiftly as possible.
Furthermore, domestic tourism has bounced back with localities deploying a range of promotional activities in a bid to attract tourists for the summer season and the upcoming holiday, National Reunification Day on April 30, and May Day.
The VNAT has therefore collaborated with relevant agencies in order to devise a pilot plan aimed at welcoming international visitors moving forward under the Prime Minister's direction on the proposal to open borders for foreign arrivals amid complicated developments relating to the COVID-19 pandemic.
It has also underscored the importance of launching a pilot scheme to welcome international visitors by selecting countries which have effectively contained the pandemic, including Japan, the Republic of Korea, and Taiwan (China).
According to the VNAT, flights must be direct ones which are conducted by travel firms that the required level of human resources and financial backing to fully meet the conditions set by state agencies.
Moreover, the destinations of international visitors will be required to full abide by disease preventive measures, with top priority being given to renowned tourist sites such as those located by the sea or on the mountain, that can suit the needs and tastes of tourists amid the complex nature of the pandemic.
On the morning of March 30, no new cases found. Three imported cases of COVID-19 were detected in the past 12 hours to 6 pm on March 29, who were put into quarantine after entry, according to the Health Ministry.
Of the new patients, two are Vietnamese women entering through the Moc Bai international border gate and are now being treated at the General Hospital of Tay Ninh province, and the remainder is a 30-year-old Indian expert. She is now being quarantined and treated at the Cu Chi Hospital for COVID-19 treatment in Ho Chi Minh City.