A Chinese national who traveled through Laos has been confirmed to have been carrying the new Coronavirus.
According to a document acquired by the Laotian Times addressed to the Luang Prabang provincial foreign affairs and health departments, the Chinese Consulate in Luang Prabang has announced that Zhang Biao, a Chinese national from Chongqing (southwest China), had been discovered to have had been infected with the new coronavirus during his travel to Laos on the 1st of February.
In the evening of the 26th of January, Mr Zhang traveled to Vientiane Capital on China Express Airlines (flight G52805) as part of a group tour. He then proceeded to go to Vang Vieng on the 27th and reached Luang Prabang on the evening of the 28th. He then returned to Chongqing on the 31st via China Express Airlines (flight G54856).
The authorities have been alerted and attempts are being made to retrace the locations on Mr. Zhang’s itinerary.
Laos has since announced it will temporarily suspend the issuance of all tourist visas at all checkpoints bordering China, while the country’s flagship airline, Lao Airlines, announced that it will temporarily cancel all flights from Vientiane to three destinations in China
The Lao PDR set up a task force last month to assess the impact of an outbreak of the new Coronavirus, although no case has yet been confirmed in the country.
So far, no cases of the virus have been confirmed in Laos, and there has also been no report of a confirmed case among Lao nationals living in foreign countries including China.