More Asian Countries Slowly Reopen to Fully Vaccinated Travelers – The New York Times

By on November 22, 2021

Even some Asian countries with lower vaccination rates have reopened their borders or plan to do so soon.

In the Philippines, where only 31 percent of people have been fully vaccinated, the Tourism Ministry said on Friday that it had approved opening to fully immunized travelers from certain countries “in principle.” A final decision will be made by the government’s Covid task force.

Understanding the Chaos in Myanmar

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The coup ended a short span of quasi-democracy. In 2011, the Tatmadaw implemented parliamentary elections and other reforms. Ms. Aung San Suu Kyi came to power as state councillor in 2016, becoming the country’s de facto head of government.

The coup was preceded by a contested election. In the Nov. 8 election, Ms. Aung San Suu Kyi’s party won 83 percent of the body’s available seats. The military, whose proxy party suffered a crushing defeat, refused to accept the results of the vote.

In Myanmar, the military government said it planned to reopen land crossings with China and Thailand next month. It also said it would allow international flights early next year if coronavirus cases continued to decline and if enough people were vaccinated.

Myanmar’s health care system has been in disarray since the military’s Feb. 1 coup, and the country has lagged behind the rest of Southeast Asia in vaccinations. The country of 54 million faced a surge in cases and deaths in July, but the daily numbers have since declined.

Vietnam, which has fully vaccinated 39 percent of its population, recorded a 46 percent increase in daily cases over the past two weeks, according to a New York Times database. Starting this month, international visitors are being allowed to visit tourist destinations, including the resort island of Phu Quoc and Quang Nam Province.

The government hopes to open the rest of the country to international travelers next year.

“Along with other economic sectors, the tourism industry should take steps to restart safely,” Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam said last month at a tourism meeting with other government officials.

India reopened its borders to most international travelers this week after 20 months of restricted travel. The country has fully vaccinated just 29 percent of its population and plans to open travel bubbles with 99 countries.

Indonesia and Thailand have allowed visitors from certain countries since October. Indonesia has fully vaccinated 33 percent of its population, while Thailand has inoculated 54 percent.

Richard C. Paddock contributed reporting.

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