Israel in talks with China to allow quarantine-free travel for vaccinated

Israel has reached understandings with Greece and Cyprus and is said to be working on similar deals with the United States and the United Arab Emirates.

Residents wearing face masks queue for nucleic acid testings in Wuhan, the Chinese city hit hardest by the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, Hubei province, China May 16, 2020 (photo credit: REUTERS/ALY SONG)
Residents wearing face masks queue for nucleic acid testings in Wuhan, the Chinese city hit hardest by the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, Hubei province, China May 16, 2020
(photo credit: REUTERS/ALY SONG)
Israel is working to reach understandings with China on recognition of vaccination that would allow cross-border travel between the two countries, Israel’s newly-installed ambassador to China said over the weekend.

Speaking to Chinese press, Ambassador Irit Ben-Abba said that Israel would like to be the first country to reach “vaccination understandings” with China. The coronavirus is believed to have originated in the Chinese city of Wuhan. A recent World Health Organization delegation to China claimed upon returning home that Chinese authorities had refused to share all raw data from the early days of the COVID-19 outbreak.

"This is one of the main things that I would like to push through with the Chinese government: to see if we can get a bilateral agreement on mutual understanding of vaccines," Ben-Abba was widely quoted in Chinese media as saying. 

Israel has reached understandings with Greece and Cyprus and is said to be working on similar deals with the United States and the United Arab Emirates. The idea would be to allow vaccinated citizens of both the countries to travel freely between one another without requiring quarantine. 

Israel has inoculated over five million people with their first dose of the Pfizer vaccine, including four million who have received both doses. A week after the second dose, the Israeli Health Ministry issues vaccinated citizens a “green passport” which gives them access to inside seating at restaurants, gyms, theaters, hotels and more. People who have recovered from COVID-19 are also eligible for the green passport.