Eight Saigon hotels to lodge foreign experts in quarantine

By Hoang Phong   July 29, 2020 | 02:11 am PT
Eight Saigon hotels to lodge foreign experts in quarantine
Three American men undergo entry procedures at Tan Son Nhat Airport, Ho Chi Minh City, March 17, 2020. Photo by VnExpress/Huu Khoa.
Ho Chi Minh City authorities have approved the list of eight three to five-star hotels as paid isolation zones for foreign experts entering the city to work.

These hotels, or nearly 1,500 rooms, will be solely used to quarantine foreign experts and high-skilled workers granted permission to enter the city to work amid the Covid-19 pandemic, with all having to pay related expenses.

The eight chosen hotels include three five-star facilities, namely Le Meridien Saigon, Hôtel des Arts Saigon and Norfolk, all located in District 1.

The other five are four-star hotels Holiday Inn, IBIS Saigon Airport, IBIS Saigon and De Nhat, all in Tan Binh District, a few kilometers from Tan Son Nhat airport, and the three-star Bat Dat Hotel in District 1.

Hotels used for isolation will not serve any other purpose, with security tasked to prevent unauthorized entry.

HCMC, Vietnam’s southern metropolis, is seeking government approval to allow 437 foreign experts and high-skilled workers to return to the city to resume work. Earlier, 3,000 foreigners and their spouses had been granted special entry for employment purposes.

Vietnam closed its borders and suspended all international flights on March 25, and has stopped issuing visas for foreign nationals since March 18, except for special cases.

A report from the Ministry of Labor, War Invalids, and Social Affairs showed over 93,000 foreigners are licensed to work in Vietnam but that nearly 22,000 have been unable to return to the country since the end of March due to Covid-19 travel restrictions.

The National Steering Committee for Covid-19 Prevention on Friday asked all foreign experts coming to Vietnam for work to get Covid-19 tests done three to seven days prior to arrival.

The request came after an increasing number of foreign experts granted permission to enter the country tested positive for the novel coronavirus, including 17 Russian oil experts traveling in a group of 69 to Ho Chi Minh City on July 11.

Vietnam has recorded 446 Covid-19 cases so far, 77 of them active.

A 99-day streak without local transmission ended last Saturday when a 57-year-old man in Da Nang was confirmed to be the latest patient. Since then, 29 more cases have been reported in Da Nang, Quang Nam and Quang Ngai provinces.

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