France, which previously banned all Sri Lankan tourists from entering that country because of COVID-19 by classifying it as a ‘red list’ country, (see Ceylon Today of 9 June), has now upgraded the country to the ‘orange zone,’ the French Embassy in Sri Lanka in a posting on its website on Tuesday (3) said.
“This means that if a Sri Lankan tourist is fully vaccinated (two weeks after the second dose of the Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca, Covishield vaccine or four weeks after the dose of the Janssen/Johnson & Johnson vaccine), he/she will be eligible to apply for a tourist visa to visit France,” French Embassy sources who cannot be quoted as they are not allowed to speak to the press, told Ceylon Today on Friday (6).
Previously, when Sri Lanka was on the red list, not even if one was fully vaccinated would one have been allowed to visit France with the exception of certain categories such as diplomats, they said.
With this upgrading to the ‘orange list,’ Sri Lanka is now on common ground with all other SAARC countries with the exception of Maldives which is in France’s red list for its citizens to visit France.
The remaining six SAARC countries which are in France ‘orange list’ are Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka.
France doesn’t recognise the Chinese and Russian COVID-19 vaccines. (PA)