Vietnam ready to reopen: PM

By Hai Binh   January 27, 2022 | 03:00 am PT
Vietnam ready to reopen: PM
Passengers at Tan Son Nhat International Airport in HCMC on January 23, 2022. Photo by VnExpress/Gia Minh
Given its high vaccination rate and experience in fighting Covid-19, Vietnam is now "confident" to reopen social and economic activities, PM Pham Minh Chinh said.

"We now have the basis to be confident," PM Chinh told a government meeting with authorities in 63 cities and provinces Thursday.

So far, 76.7 percent of the nation's 96-million population have received two vaccine doses.

However, he also warned about existing risks, especially with Vietnam having detected Omicron infections in the community.

Vietnam has recorded over 160 Omicron infections nationwide. Of them, six are community transmission cases, with five in HCMC and one in Hanoi, and the rest are all imported.

"We absolutely must not become negligent or let our guard down during the upcoming Tet holiday," Chinh said.

Vietnamese will enjoy a nine-day break from Jan. 29 to Feb. 6 for this year’s Lunar New Year, called Tet in Vietnam.

The PM also highlighted the request to speed up vaccination progress throughout the Tet break to achieve the target of immunizing all children aged 12-17 with two vaccine doses within this month and offer the third dose to all people from 18 upward.

Vietnam has resumed most domestic activities and eased border restrictions.

Regular commercial flights have been resumed between Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City and Bangkok, Phnom Penh, San Francisco, Seoul, Singapore, Taipei and Tokyo from Jan. 1 and plans to resume more routes to Europe in the future.

Under current regulations, fully vaccinated people and those who have recovered from Covid-19 arriving in Vietnam only need to self-isolate for three days.

Everyone, except children below two, must have tested negative for the novel coronavirus using the PCR method within 72 hours before departure.

In the latest wave that hit the country in late April, 2.16 million cases have been confirmed and 1.92 million of them have recovered.

Since the pandemic started last year, the death toll in Vietnam has climbed to 37,165, or 1.7 percent of all infections.

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