Namibia monitoring China’s rising Covid-19 cases, protocols to remain unchanged

December 29, 2022 1572

The Ministry of Health and Social Services says Namibia’s Covid-19 protocols will remain unchanged while they monitor developments in China where a suspected new variant of the virus has been attributed to a surge in cases in that country.

“We are currently monitoring the situation in China and whether the epidemiological trajectory justify that we revise our measures,” Executive Director in the Ministry of Health and Social Services Ben Nangombe told The Brief.

Quizzed on when a decision will be made, the Executive Director said he could not provide a timeline at that point in time.

Namibia’s stance is different from a host of other countries that have changed their protocols toward travellers from China due to China’s surge in infections. 

The United States has become the latest country to impose Covid-19  testing requirement for visitors from China, after the Asian nation announced it would reopen borders next week. 

The United States joins Italy, Japan, Taiwan and India who have already imposed mandatory tests for travellers from China.

After three years, China has started loosening its strict Covid-19 measures after dismantling the country’s long-held zero-Covid policy earlier this month and will let people travel more freely from 8 January 2023.

Before the pandemic, China had been the world's largest outbound tourism market.

According to the Hospitality Association of Namibia figures, Namibia has recorded 2,461 Chinese tourists arrivals from December 2021 to November 2022, with the highest arrivals of 298 recorded in July 2022, according Cirrus Capital data.

Namibia in August scrapped the requirement for foreign travellers to produce a vaccination certificate or negative PCR test result at the country’s ports of entry, a development which is said to have also boosted international tourist arrivals in the country. 

 

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Last modified on Monday, 02 January 2023 10:44

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