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Business Operations, Visa Program Resumptions Signal Cambodia's Post-Pandemic Comeback

Posted by Mizpah Grace Castro on October 30, 2021
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In light of significant improvements in covid-19 mitigation, Cambodia is set to return all major economic activities this November. 

This will include the operation of markets and factories, resumption of in-person classes, and conduct of official events. 

In case of an outbreak, Prime Minister Hun Sen instructed that infected persons be admitted to treatment facilities (if severely symptomatic) or treated at home (if asymptomatic), and for the affected establishment to undergo disinfection and continue operations as normal. 

“Just send them off for treatment and let the rest continue their study because they have been fully vaccinated,” he said of schools, in particular. “We cannot stay in the hole any longer… We will reopen schools across the country for our students to pursue their study from November 1 onwards.” 

Students in Cambodia experienced an erratic academic calendar with intermittent suspensions over the past year-and-a-half. Moreover, among businesses, a single transmission case would lead to the entire shutdown of a store or factory. 

Now that almost 77% of the population in Cambodia are fully vaccinated, authorities are confident in a continuous downward trend of cases and gradual resumption of regular activities. 

The high vaccination rate puts Cambodia ahead of first-world countries like Japan, Germany, France, and South Korea, and ways ahead of neighboring nations Vietnam (21.3%), Laos (36.57%), and Thailand (37.9%). 

Some upcoming official events are the National Assembly’s plenary session, the new headquarters inauguration of the Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction; the inauguration of a new bridge linking Kampong Cham and Tbong Khmum through Strung Trang and Kroch Chhmar districts; and a recognition ceremony for infrastructural growth in Preah Sihanouk. 

Also on the pipeline is the resumption of the tourist visa and visa exemption program, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation announced. 

Issuance of tourist visas had been suspended after the covid-19 outbreak, making it difficult for travelers entering Cambodia and negatively affecting tourist-dependent industries. 

More than a year after the pandemic disrupted classes and business operations nationwide, the Royal Government has already begun easing visa conditions and shortening quarantine requirements. 

Since October 19, the tourist e-visa scheme has also been made available once again, alongside preparation of international airlines; another major step towards reopening Cambodia. 

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