Frontline workers and tourism industry to receive Covid booster injections in Sri Lanka, South Asia
To reopen the travel industry and revive the economy, Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa on Friday ordered frontline workers and tourism staff to receive a third booster of the Covid vaccine next month.
In a statement, the president’s office said more than one million people will receive a third injection of the Pfizer vaccine starting November 1. These people include security personnel, health personnel and workers in the tourism industry.
Also read: COVID-19 vaccination in India exceeds one billion. And his neighbors?
Sri Lanka has so far fully immunized over 60% of its 22 million people.
The country, which relies on international tourism, partially rolled back Covid restrictions late last month by allowing fully vaccinated travelers with a negative test to enter without quarantine.
From $ 4.3 billion in 2018 to just $ 33 million in the first eight months of the year, the country’s tourism revenues have plummeted.
Also Read: Lanka Seeks $ 500 Million Loan From India For Fuel Purchase
The revival of the industry is crucial to replenish reserves, which stood at around 2.6 billion dollars at the end of September.
Keen interest has been shown by travelers from countries such as Russia, Britain, France and Germany, and international flights will also be increased from next month, Tourism Minister Prasanna said. Ranatunga.
“The goal is to have a strong winter season from November to March or April next year,” Ranatunga told Reuters.
(With contributions from agencies)