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Wednesday, 24 June, 2020, 10 : 22 AM [IST]

Maldives becomes first South Asian country to open borders for tourism

The Maldives has become the first country in South Asia to open its borders. The Indian Ocean Island country will open its borders on July 15 to the world. The country had closed its borders on March 27 due to the COVID crisis, impacting its largely tourism-dependent economy, reports Sidhant Sibal for WION.

The announcement was made by Maldives President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih on Tuesday during a presser. He outlined the Maldivian Government’s major planned activities to help the country recover and rebuild under a ‘new normal’.

He said, "On July 15th the country will reopen its borders for international travel, and the Government will allow resorts to welcome visitors. This will provide much-needed relief to our Tourism Industry and accelerate the country’s economic recovery."

July will also witness the further easing of temporary restrictive measures in Maldives Prayers in the congregation are expected to resume, students will return to classrooms, and restaurants and cafes will open for dine-in service according to the president.

Guesthouses are expected to resume business in August.

The country had 2217 COVID cases, out of which 1813 recovered and active number stands at 394. Of the total COVID cases, 1442 were foreigners while only 775 were Maldivians. The country confirmed its first case of COVID on March 7th and by April 15th the greater Male region had gone on full lockdown.

India had reached out to the country with medicine and other relief. Under operation Sanjeevani, India sent 6.2 tonnes of essential medicines to the country. In the month of May, India sent 600 tonnes of food items to the Maldives via Indian Naval Ship Kesari. (Source: WION)

 
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