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Vietnam to temporarily suspend visa exemption for citizens of Belarus, Russia and Japan

10:32 | 20/03/2020

Starting at 12h00 March 21, Vietnam will suspend unilateral visa exemption policy for citizens from Belarus, Russia and Japan in a bid to contain spread of the novel coronavirus to the Southeast Asian nation.    

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Foreign tourists walking in Hoan Kiem lake, Hanoi wear mask as required. Photo: AFP

Citizens from the aforesaid countries holding ordinary passports will still be able to visit Viet Nam provided that they have obtained proper visas prior to their arrival.

Citizens who hold diplomatic or official passport are eligible to enter Viet Nam without visa in line with the current agreements on visa exemption for holders of diplomatic and official passports signed between Viet Nam and the above countries.

Entrants from Belarus, Russia and Japan shall be subject to medical preventive measures in accordance with the applicable regulations of Viet Nam.

The Foreign Ministry said Viet Nam had informed the three countries about the decision and will make proper adjustments in accordance with the developments of the pandemic.

On March 17, the Vietnamese Government decided to temporarily halt visa issuance to foreigners for 30 days, applicable since March 18.

Under the March 17 decision, foreigners enjoying visa-waiver program or overseas Vietnamese and their spouses and children having been granted with certificate of visa exemption shall only be allowed to enter Viet Nam if they can submit papers certifying they are not positive for the virus.

In addition to the current quarantine measures, the Government requested that all incoming travelers from the US, Europe and ASEAN countries shall be subject to centralized quarantine.

Competent authorities shall supervise and medically monitor those who are not subject to centralized quarantine during their mandatory isolation at place of residence.

The Government also requested cut of incoming flights from COVID-19 stricken areas to Viet Nam. The Ministry of Health, Ministry of National Defense, Ministry of Public Security, and Ministry of Transport shall decide on the parking areas for flights from the above areas.

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