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Coronavirus

Japanese business travel to Vietnam to resume with trial flight

Up to 250 executives to take part in first trip after clearing coronavirus test

Vietnam and Japan have agreed to a trial project in which a chartered flight for Japanese business people will be allowed to land in the Southeast Asian nation.   © Reuters

TOKYO -- The Japanese government plans to relaunch business travel links with Vietnam on a trial basis by the end of June, Nikkei has learned.

The project will begin with a chartered flight for up to 250 business travelers. To curb the spread of the novel coronavirus, all passengers will undergo polymerase chain reaction testing before departure.

According to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Vietnam in late March suspended entry for all foreign nationals. The Japanese government expects Vietnam to accept travelers from Japan who undergo PCR testing before departure. Japan will work on raising its PCR testing capacity.

Vietnam is willing to accept Japanese business travelers as it goes about resuming economic activities, a source in Japan's foreign ministry told Nikkei. Most of the travelers on the maiden flight will be business people newly assigned by their Japanese companies to posts in Vietnam.

According to the Japan External Trade Organization, over 1,800 Japanese companies had offices in Vietnam as of December 2018. Data from the Japan National Tourism Organization show that a daily average of 2,300 people from Japan visited Vietnam in 2018.

Japan will also consider relaxing entry restrictions for Vietnamese as it looks to fill private-sector jobs with Vietnamese technical trainees.

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