Taiwan considers travel bubble with South Korea

Taiwan's CECC head prefers running 'business bubble' first before allowing travel bubbles

Gyeongbokgung Palace. (PickPik photo)

Gyeongbokgung Palace. (PickPik photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwan's Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) head on Wednesday (July 8) said that he is supportive of the notion of a travel bubble between South Korea and Taiwan, and he welcomes an upcoming summit on the topic in August.

When asked if he approved of a South Korea and Taiwan travel bubble during his weekly press conference on Wednesday afternoon, Minister of Health and Welfare and CECC head Chen Shih-chung (陳時中) said he is supportive of a coming "demonstration of a travel bubble" by a South Korean delegation planning to visit Taiwan. He said that the visit, which is part of the Taiwan-Korea Tourism Summit slated for August, will be a good experience for the consideration of the future opening of Taiwan to tourism.

However, he emphasized that the current "business bubble" must first be fully implemented and its success ensured before moving on to allowing regular visits by tourists under a travel scheme. Chen said that he welcomes the delegation from South Korea and other nations who wish to discuss how to establish a travel bubble that still maintains Taiwan's ability to prevent the spread of the virus.

Chen said that each country has different ideas on how to open up travel, and he pledged that the CECC will offer its full cooperation on opening the country to tourists from a given country, including the establishment of trial runs first. When asked if Taiwan is considering a travel bubble with other countries, Chen responded that the business bubble phase needs to be completed first.

South Korea currently has 13,244 confirmed coronavirus cases and 285 deaths from the disease. Although South Korea has been able to substantially lower its rate of new infections since the initial outbreak in March, it is still reporting over 40 cases per day.

Updated : 2021-01-25 08:39 GMT+08:00