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Vietnam Pushes for Mutual Recognition of 'Vaccine Passports' With Some Nations

Vaccine passports may soon become part of a “new normal” as more Vietnamese are getting their two shots.

As VnExpress reports, Prime Minister Phạm Minh Chính tasked the Ministry of Foreign Affairs with developing guidelines for the implementation of a vaccine passport in collaboration with regional nations.

The PM’s office named Southeast Asian countries, China, Japan, South Korea, the European Union and the United States as some nations and regions on the list for the passport. PM Chính also stressed the urgency and importance of employing an internationally recognized pandemic document in the current situation.

A work-in-progress version of the vaccine passport has already been carried out on a trial basis since the beginning of this month, albeit only for Vietnamese nationals. On September 4, a flight from Japan landed Van Don International Airport in Quang Ninh, bringing 297 fully immunized passengers back into the country. Similar flights from the US and France took place on September 14 and 23, respectively.

The vaccine passport trial program stipulates that passengers must either be fully vaccinated for at least two weeks or can provide proof of past COVID-19 infection. To board the plane, they need to provide a negative COVID-19 test (confirmed with the RT-PCR method) within 72 hours of the flight.

With the vaccine passport, travelers only need to spend seven days under centralized quarantine, followed by an additional seven days of home quarantine. It is unclear at the moment whether these policies will change after the pilot program concludes.

In December last year, Singapore and Vietnam came to an agreement to create an aviation “green lane” to facilitate business exchange and repatriation. Before more details of the deal could come to fruition, Vietnam was hit by its worst outbreak, while more and more clusters started to pop up in Singapore.

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