Direct Flights Between the Maldives and China Indefinitely Halts

Image: Fayaaz Moosa / Sun Photo

The government has revealed that the direct flights between the Maldives and China has been temporarily stopped due to the Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV).

At the press conference held today at the president’s office, Foreign Minister Abdulla Shahid has revealed that the government has decided to temporarily discontinue the direct flights between the Maldives China due to the coronavirus outbreak. Minister Shahid as further urged all the citizens not to travel abroad unless absolutely necessary.

In regard to the suspension of the direct flights, Minister Ali Waheed commented that the decision to halt the direct flights between the two countries comes after discussions with the key stakeholders in the tourism industry.

Health Minister Abdulla Ameen has revealed precautionary measures are in place to screen all arrivals in the Maldives. He added that currently no confirmed cases of the coronavirus have been found.

“The symptoms of this virus is similar to that of a common cold. We are not treating every single traveler who has a warm temperature as a suspected case of coronavirus. There are international standards in place to detect such cases and we are following the international protocols in screening people for this virus,” minister Ameen stated.

China is the number one tourism market to the Maldives, and with the Chinese New Year Holidays in progress, the outbreak is predicted to affect traveler movements, especially from China. Furthermore, among the countries with confirmed cases of the virus include key markets to the Maldives.