Riyadh, Nov 12, 2021: Saudi Arabia has recognised Serum Institute of India’s Covishield as an approved Covid-19 vaccine for entry into the country.
With this, Covishield has joined the list of eight other approved vaccines — Pfizer BioNTech, Comirnaty, Oxford AstraZeneca, SK Bioscience, Vaxzevria, Moderna, Spikevax and Johnson & Johnson.
According to a statement by Saudi Tourism Authority, travellers who are fully vaccinated with Saudi-approved vaccines can enter the country without having to undergo institutional quarantine.
While entry into Saudi Arabia is still temporarily suspended for travellers coming or passing through India in the 14 days prior to their arrival into Saudi, the approval of Covishield is a positive development as the country prepares to open its borders to Indian tourists.
“Indian travellers who have spent 14 days in a country that is not on the list of countries where entry is temporarily suspended immediately before entering Saudi are also permitted as long as they are fully immunized,” it said, adding that a negative PCR test conducted no more than 72 hours before departure is a mandatory requirement in all cases.
Earlier in August, Saudi had allowed fully-vaccinated Indian nationals to return without quarantining in a third country based on certain conditions.
In July, Saudi Arabia had stated that it would impose a three-year travel ban on citizens travelling to countries on the kingdom’s ‘red list’, which included India, under its efforts to curb the spread of coronavirus and its new variants.