The Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam (CAAV) has banned incoming passenger flights to land at Tan Son Nhat International Airport in Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC), starting from May 27.
The move was taken amid rising coronavirus threats in the southern metropolis. The suspension would be effective until June 4, 2021, a CAAV representative said, adding that the airport still operates outbound flights.
The CAAV has sent an urgent dispatch to airlines, the Southern Airport Authority, the HCMC People’s Committee, the city's Consular Department under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and the Immigration Department under the Ministry of Public Security notifying the suspension.
Foreign arrivals to Vietnam have been limited since March last year due to Covid-19. Only the entry of Vietnamese citizens stranded overseas, foreign officials, diplomats, experts, investors and high-skilled workers are allowed. The passengers must undergo a 21-day mandatory quarantine period, either in centralized camps or other facilities including hotels.
HCMC on May 27 recorded 36 new Covid-19 infections, which are related to a new outbreak found in a Revival Ekklesia Mission Christian sect in Go Vap district.
At the time of writing, the city’s total number of Covid-19 infections in the ongoing wave is 44.
Municipal authorities have closed restaurants, beauty parlors, spas, tourism sites, museums, walking streets, night markets and parks, starting May 28.
Apart from the closure of most service establishments, all gatherings of more than 10 people are also prohibited until further notice.
Families selling food and beverages on the street can only offer takeaways. Meanwhile, restaurants inside hotels can only serve guests provided that they sit two meters apart and no more than 20 people are permitted at the same time.
Municipal Party Committee's Secretary Nguyen Van Nen said the city should request its medical authorities to perform mass Covid-19 testing.
He added that HCM City's current coronavirus crisis may last longer than others, as the infection source of several new coronavirus cases remains to be unidentified.
A report from the Ministry of Health showed that Vietnam has recorded 6,396 Covid-19 patients. Among them, 2,853 recoveries and 46 deaths related to the disease.