Maldives' vaccine tourism strategy to commence after vaccinating entire population

Tourists at Velana International Airport. (Sun Photo/Fayaz Moosa)

The Maldives will begin vaccinating tourists arriving in the Maldives, once the eligible local population of the nation is fully vaccinated against COVID-19 which will then kickstart the vaccine tourism drive of the nation, Tourism Minister Dr. Abdulla Mausoom has stated. 

In an interview with CNBC, Dr. Mausoom said that convenient arrangements have been made for tourist arrivals as the Maldives worked to overcome the stagnation faced as a consequence of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The Minister stated that under the efforts to recover the industry, arrangements would be made through the Three V's strategy of "Visit, Vaccinate and Vacation". 

The Minister also said that more convenient arrangements would be made for tourists that have completed the vaccination against the virus through double doses after speaking on the current requirement whereby tourists are required to present a 96 hour negative PCR test result. The Minister said that the Maldivian health authorities would announce these easements very soon. 

Dr. Abdulla Mausoom, Maldives' Tourism Minister. (Sun Photo/Fayaz Moosa)

He went on to further state that the Three V's program would be put into effect after the entire eligible population of the Maldives received double doses of the vaccine against the virus. More than 53 percent of the total population have so far received the first dose of the vaccine.

The Minister also said that around 90 percent of the tourism industry workers have received vaccines for the virus since they are the ones working in close proximity with tourists and a lot of emphasis was given on vaccinating these workers. 

Minister Mausoom predicted that the supply of vaccines would not be an issue and that tourists could be charged for the vaccines they receive, which would also not be an issue. 

The Minister hailed the strategy as an important one to reach the tourism target goals of the nation set out for this year. 

So far in 2021, the Maldives has received342,832 tourists. An increasing number of tourists for "Workations" have also been observed in the Maldives this year.