Home International Namibia considers scrapping 72 hours negative PCR test for travellers

Namibia considers scrapping 72 hours negative PCR test for travellers

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The Namibian government is looking into the possibility of allowing persons who are fully vaccinated against Covid-19 to enter the country for business and tourism.

Ichingo Chobe River Lodge was named Namibia’s Leading Tented Safari Camp 2017. Picture: http://www.namibian.org.

By Namibia Press Agency (NAMPA)

WINDHOEK – The Namibian government is looking into the possibility of allowing persons who are fully vaccinated against Covid-19 to enter the country for business and tourism – without the 72 hours negative PCR test.

Speaking at the Dubai World Expo 2020 during the Namibia Travel and Tourism Seminar on Thursday, the Minister of Environment, Forestry and Tourism (Meft), Pohamba Shifeta said Meft in collaboration with other responsible ministries are deliberating the matter to allow for a collective final decision to be announced before the tourism high season starts, June to September, in an effort to boost the tourism sector.

He said although foreign arrivals in 2020 declined by a massive 89.4% the country has seen a significant increase of 37.4% in 2021. The government in September 2020, opened up its international borders for international travel, tourism and business trade after adopting sound Covid-19 public health measures and devising tourism revival initiative strategies.

“It is safe to travel, Namibia in general and the tourism sector in particular has put in place robust and sufficient Covid-19 public health protocols to safeguard the safety of visitors to the country and its citizens,” he said.

He said to further strengthen and boost the tourism industry which has been hit-hard by the Covid-19 pandemic, the government in 2020 adopted a policy to issue visas upon arrival to various countries including the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

Shifeta said the country did not receive significant arrivals from the UAE in the past, hoping that the resumption of Qatar Airways in June/July 2022 will lead to increased trade, business and leisure voyages of the citizens and residents of the two countries, and those who live nearby in the UAE.

“Namibia has been participating in the Dubai expo 2020 with the aim to share with the world what the country can offer in terms of tourism and business opportunities,” Shifeta said.

The world expo is being hosted by Dubai of UAE from October 1, 2021 to March 31, it was originally scheduled for 2020, however was postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

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