JEDDAH: Pakistanis travelling to Saudi Arabia face new difficulties due to the recently implemented restrictions and policies as the kingdom has restricted flights and travellers from Pakistan, while also making it difficult for the Pakistani community in Saudi Arabia to visit back home.
KSA has not included any of the Chinese vaccines in its recommended vaccine list, meaning most people in Pakistan—which has largely relied on vaccines produced by China for its mass inoculation program—can not travel to Saudi Arabia.
Pfizer, Oxford, Moderna, and Johnson and Johnson’s coronavirus vaccines have been recommended by the kingdom for use. Passengers who do not receive the shots from the recommended vaccines will have to undergo a mandatory quarantine period in Saudi Arabia.
The cost of the quarantine will have to be paid by the passengers themselves. The proposed conditions will be implemented from May 20.
Pakistan launched its coronavirus vaccination drive on February 2, after receiving the first batch of the Sinopharm vaccine.
In its first phase, Pakistan has been vaccinating frontline healthcare workers. The campaign will soon be extended to include citizens under 40 years old.
Sinopharm, developed by a state-run pharmaceutical company in China, has shown to be 79% effective.