|Planes at Nội Bài International Airport in Hà Nội. — VNA/VNS Photo|
HÀ NỘI — The Ministry of Transport has proposed two stages for the upcoming resumption of regular international commercial flights starting December 15.
At a meeting chaired by Deputy Minister Phạm Bình Minh on Thursday regarding the plan, a representative of the ministry said the first stage, lasting for two weeks from December 15, will see the operation of flights between Việt Nam and the destinations of Beijing, Tokyo, Seoul, Taipei – Taiwan (China), Bangkok, Singapore, Vientiane, Phnom Penh, and San Francisco or Los Angeles.
All international flights will land at Nội Bài airport in Hà Nội and Tân Sơn Nhất airport in HCM City, with a frequency of four flights per week. The weekly number of foreign arrivals is expected at about 14,000.
The second stage starting from January next year will last for one month and cover more destinations – Kuala Lumpur, Hong Kong (China), Paris, Frankfurt, Sydney, and Moscow. More airports are suggested to join the scheme, including Đà Nẵng in the central city of Đà Nẵng, Cam Ranh in the central province of Khánh Hòa, Phú Quốc in the Mekong Delta province of Kiên Giang, and Vân Đồn in the northern province of Quảng Ninh. Flight frequency will be increased to seven per week, with the weekly number of entries estimated at some 40,000.
Participants agreed with the policy of reopening international flight routes given that Việt Nam has now basically put the COVID-19 pandemic under control. They said there are a large number of Vietnamese people wishing to return home, including workers with expired labour contracts; students and people on working trips trapped overseas; and expatriates.
The resumption will create conditions for foreign investors and experts to travel to Việt Nam to study the market and work for foreign-invested projects, they added.
Deputy PM Minh said the resumption is a practical need in the new normal situation. He required the building of a single medical declaration software applied to people on entry and good implementation of related information work.
Flight resumption must meet health requirements: FM spokesperson
The operation of flights must be done strictly for the right people and in line with Việt Nam’s medical requirements for people entering the nation, said Spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Lê Thị Thu Hằng while informing the press on the resumption of international flights and the recognition of vaccine passports.
At the ministry’s regular press conference held on Thursday, the diplomat said those allowed to enter Việt Nam currently are Vietnamese citizens; people entering for diplomatic, official, or business purposes; experts; investors; skilled workers and their families; and foreign students studying in Việt Nam. People coming to Việt Nam to learn about the market, attend conferences and seminars, visit relatives; overseas Vietnamese visiting relatives; and international tourists participating in pilot tourism programmes in Việt Nam must have a certificate of vaccination against COVID-19 or recovery from the disease. Those on entry will have to comply with medical conditions and quarantine regulations during their stay in Việt Nam.
Regarding the process of recognising vaccine passports, Hằng said the Ministry of Foreign Affairs discussed with about 80 partners on mutual recognition of the passports.
The Vietnamese authorities were also urgently completing related software solutions to soon issue a vaccine passport form meeting international standards, she added.
As of early December this year, Japan, the US, the UK, Australia, and Belarus had recognised Việt Nam’s vaccination certificate with a number of specific standards on vaccine types. Indian and Canada had agreed with Việt Nam in principle, while other partners, including ASEAN, the EU, China, and the Republic of Korea, were actively considering Việt Nam’s proposals and waiting for the nation’s introduction of its vaccine passport model.
As of Wednesday, Việt Nam had recognised the vaccination certificates of 78 countries and territories, which were officially introduced to the foreign ministry.
“The recognition is the foundation for the holders of such papers to directly use it in Việt Nam and get their quarantine duration reduced to seven days in line with the Ministry of Health’s guidance on cutting quarantine time for fully vaccinated people or those who have recovered from COVID-19,” Hằng said. — VNS