January 27, 2020 - Given the rapidly increasing number of confirmed 2019 Novel coronavirus (nCoV) cases in the People’s Republic of China, Hong Kong, and in Macau, the National Emergency Committee on January 27th recommended to President Tommy E. Remegnesau, Jr. to prohibit chartered flights from the People’s Republic of China and temporarily suspend all direct chartered flights from Hong Kong and Macau until further notice.
Vice President Raynold Oilouch and the National Emergency Committee meet prior to issuing recommendation to suspending flights from China.
“Over 20 cities in People’s Republic of China including Wuhan have confirmed cases ranging from all parts of the country and dozens more from the region. Flights carrying passengers directly from those areas pose direct risk,” National Emergency Committee said.
The Republic is on high alert in response to the 2019 Novel coronavirus (nCoV), which has over 2,000 confirmed cases worldwide and claimed over 50 lives in the People’s Republic of China. While the Ministry of Health and border control agencies have been implementing health screenings at the Palau International Airport, and Malakal Seaport, since January 23, the threat of the new coronavirus being imported into Palau continues to heighten.
President Remengesau has directed his office to act on the recommendations immediately and is expected to issue an executive order within the next 24 hours.
“Palau’s isolation can give us an advantage in minimizing the risks of the virus’ entry and we’ll put it to use. I commend our health ministry and all agencies for their vigilance and efforts in protecting our borders. we will take action on all precautionary and preventive measures as recommended by the NEC and the Ministry of Health,"President Remengesau said in a statement to the media.