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Covid-19 Measures Eased For Schools, Businesses

Source: Vientiane Times

Covid-19-related restrictions were eased to allow schools at all levels across the country to reopen, even as the government extended prevention and control measures starting from Monday.

The Prime Minister’s Office issued a notification on Sunday regarding the extension of the prevention and control measures along with the easing of some restrictions.

The movement of domestic passengers and goods by air, land and water routes has been allowed, and passengers will no longer need to declare travel permits. There are also no quarantine requirements and no limited time for travel. But service providers and customers must be fully vaccinated, with exceptions being made for pregnant women and children whose ages are less than those of the target groups. Cross-border transportation of goods will also continue.

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In order to reopen schools, the government has tasked the Ministry of Education and Sports to work with the Ministry of Health and relevant sectors to define conditions and measures to prevent and control the Coronavirus. Local taskforces for Covid-19 prevention and control are required to work with the local departments of education and sports to permit schools to reopen.

The government will continue to suspend the operation of entertainment venues, karaoke venues, internet cafés, snooker shops, casinos and game shops.

In areas affected by community outbreaks, massage and spa services, beauty salons, barber shops, cinema theatres, food gardens, tourism sites and indoor and outdoor sport centres will not be allowed to open.

Other businesses not mentioned above may continue their operations. But any business where an outbreak is reported must be temporarily closed for disinfection, and to classify and isolate the risk group before resuming operations.

The government continues to suspend the issuance of entry visas for foreign tourists, except foreign nationals permitted to enter Laos in line with the government’s plan to pilot a programme to bring in foreign visitors in order to revitalise the tourism industry.

Recently, Prime Minister Phankham Viphavanh instructed the Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism to work with the Ministry of Industry and Commerce, the Lao National Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the National Taskforce for Covid-19 Prevention and Control and other relevant sectors to draw up a uniform plan to reopen the country.

The Prime Minister also told state authorities and the National Chamber of Commerce and Industry to work with entrepreneurs to ensure they are prepared for welcoming visitors once the country is opened.