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May 28, 2020 / 14:20

E-visa issuance from July 1 does not mean reopening of borders: Vietnam ministry

Resolution No.79/ND-CP materializing the Law on Entry, Exit, Transit, and Residence of Foreigners in Vietnam will take effect from July 1.

The announcement on e-visa granting to citizens from 80 countries and a list of international border gates that allow the entry of e-visa holders has caused misunderstanding among Vietnamese and foreigners that Vietnam will reopen its borders from July 1.

 Local and foreign travelers at Noi Bai International Airport. Photo: Quy Nguyen (Kinh te & Do thi)

However, a source from the Immigration Department under the Ministry of Public Security told Tuoi Tre Online that the announcement of the newly-issued Resolution No.79/ND-CP is aimed at materializing the Law on Entry, Exit, Transit, and Residence of Foreigners in Vietnam which will take effect from July 1. 

“Many people misunderstand that Vietnam will allow the entry of foreigners from 80 countries from July 1 which is currently suspended to prevent and control the Covid-19 pandemic,” a representative from the department was quoted as saying. “The reopening of borders must be expressly instructed by the government,” he added.

The announcement of the e-visa issuance to citizens from 80 countries from July 1 has caused equivocal joy among many Vietnamese and foreigners.

“Even TripAdvisor asked us about the veracity of this information,” Nguyen Son Thuy, director of Indochina Unique Tourist told The Saigon Times.

On a thread titled “E-visas from 1st July” on Tripadvior, nickname Manatdollar from the US posted a link from the Vietnamese Government Portal (VGP) on May 26 about e-visa issuance and was concerned about what documents will be required for e-visa application, medical certificate and installation of tracking app on smartphone and how long will they be put under quarantine. Some nicknames said they will travel to Vietnam if allowed. 

“If allowed, I would definitely go. Tick a box to say you intend to quarantine. Job done," Daniel F commented.

“Great news as a start, let’s see what the restrictions are. Surprised the UK is on the list,” said nickname JoLeicester.

Foreigners commenting on Vietnam granting e-visas on Tripadvisor.

Earlier, the government piloted a two-year electronic visa program for foreigners traveling to Vietnam, starting on February 1, 2017, and which translated into exponential growth of arrivals. This pilot program end on June 30 when the the Law on Entry, Exit, Transit, and Residence of Foreigners in Vietnam takes effect.

Before the outbreak of Covid-19, foreign citizens were granted e-visas at international border gates listed in Appendix II attached to Decree 07/2017-ND-CP. Procedures for applying and payment will be done online. 

According to the department, granting e-visa will benefit the country’s economic development and contribute to ensuring national security and social order.