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Phu Quoc will not open its doors to international tourists next month

The Saigon Times

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HCMC – As its vaccination rate remains low, Phu Quoc Island off the Kien Giang Province has said that it will not resume international tourism next month as earlier planned.

Kien Giang Chairman Lam Minh Thanh said Phu Quoc City has yet to complete the vaccination of at least 90% of its residents as expected.

To date, only 35% of residents aged from 18 in the city have got the first shot and 6% are fully vaccinated, the local media reported.

Only a small volume of Covid-19 vaccines has been allocated to Phu Quoc.

The Ministry of Health and the World Health Organization have recommended that the interval between doses of Covid-19 vaccines should be four to eight weeks.

Even if Phu Quoc is allocated more vaccine doses right now, it would need around two months to vaccinate 90% of its population, Thanh added.

The province will resume international travel when it can ensure safety for its residents.

According to Bui Quoc Thai, director of the Kien Giang Department of Tourism, there will be a rehearsal in October to prepare to welcome foreign tourists at the Phu Quoc International Airport and transport them to designated hotels.

Although Phu Quoc City has applied anti-pandemic measures in line with the prime minister’s Directive 19 since September 21, it recorded 57 cases over the past two days.

On September 10, the Government approved the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism’s proposal to pilot a six-month bubble tourism plan which will permit Phu Quoc to receive international tourists who are fully vaccinated from October.

In the first three months, Phu Quoc would allow 3,000-5,000 tourists per month to enter through charter flights and then confine them to designated areas.

In the following three months, it would welcome 5,000-10,000 guests per month. Tourists can fly commercial flights to the island and visit more destinations there.

The Kien Giang government and the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism would consult with local residents on the plan, while the Ministry of Health was asked to coordinate with the relevant agencies to prioritize vaccine supply for Phu Quoc.

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