South Korea has proposed a travel bubble arrangement with a number of South-East Asian nations who have efficiently contained the COVID-19 outbreak, including Thailand, Taiwan, and Vietnam.
The travel bubble is believed to provide an economical boost for the struggling tourism industries of the countries involved. Thailand’s tourism industry has suffered severely the effects of the global pandemic, as international travel is still under strict restrictions.
South Koreans Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism held a meeting to examine options to help the country’s slacking tourism sector. The devised plan suggested travel bubbles with countries that have handled their COVID-19 cases well, such as Thailand.
Thai Government reacted positively to South Korea’s tourism industry’s bubble proposal, but as for now, no official agreements have been made.
South Korea is moving forward to debate these travel agreements with Taiwan, Thailand, and Vietnam.
As soon as the travel arrangement is ready, the nations will issue immunity passports with one another, allowing travel between the countries. It is unclear whether these agreements work only for the passport holders of that country, or if foreigners living in these countries full time are allowed to travel as well.
Negotiations between South-Korea and Taiwan are set at the end of August, on Hsinchu City, Taiwan. Official meetings with Thailand and Vietnam are expected around the same time.
Other nations deemed safe of the coronavirus, such as Australia, New Zealand have also showed their interest in ASE travel bubble negotiations.
In accordance with Thailand Minister for Tourism and Sport Phiphat Ratchakitprakarn, international tourists looking to benefit from the “travel bubble” agreement have to be examined for the virus before boarding a flight to Thailand, and once again when arriving at the airport.
Source: Pulse News, Bangkok Post
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