The South Korean government will increase the weekly number of international flights to the United States, Europe and other COVID-19 quarantine-free nations by 100 flights every month starting in May in line with growing demand for overseas travel, Interior Minister Jeon Hae-cheol said Wednesday.
Yonhap news agency quoted the minister as saying, during a government coronavirus response meeting, that the country's COVID-19 wave has been on the downturn for the third week in a row, and demand for overseas travel is expected to go up as foreign nations are gradually lifting quarantine requirements after passing their omicron infection peaks.
"Ending its 10-week ascent, the (daily) infection tally has been on the decline for a third consecutive week," Jeon said. "The average daily infections over the past week came to some 270,000, about 30 percent less than the previous week."
To meet an expected increase in demand for overseas travel,
"The weekly frequency of international flights to quarantine-free and visa-free countries, such as America, Europe, Thailand and Singapore, will be expanded by 100 flights every month, starting next month,"
From July, the rate of expansion will be further increased to 300 flights every month, he also added.
South Korea's new coronavirus cases remained in the 200,000s for the second straight day on Wednesday, as the spread of the omicron variant has slowed down after peaking last month, Yonhap news agency reported.
The country reported 286,294 new COVID-19 infections, including 22 cases from overseas, bringing the total caseload to 14,553,644, the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency said.
The death toll from COVID-19 came to 18,033, up 371 from Sunday, the KDCA said.
News Source: Emirates News Agency