Travel agent Charles Chang, whose clientele is mostly from Asia, has been getting many phone calls lately from Chinese-based Canadian citizens and permanent residents.
According to Chang, most of them are asking for information on how they can enter Canada in the coming weeks, given that they’re fully vaccinated with the Chinese-made vaccine – Sinopharm.
However, despite the federal government about to relax the rules on July 5 for eligible, fully-vaccinated residents of Canada to re-enter the country without undergoing the mandatory quarantine, the Chinese vaccine has not been approved by Health Canada.
Thus, the aforementioned residents stuck in China will not be allowed entry to Canada without being subject to the current 14-day quarantine.
"In other words, Canadian citizens who took vaccines that are not approved by Health Canada could return to Canada. However, they are still required to adhere to the quarantine rules, including staying in the hotel for 14 days upon arrival," said Chang.
Chang stressed that foreigners still aren't allowed to enter Canada at the moment, even if they were immunized with vaccines approved by Health Canada.
Chinese state-run media has boasted about their immunization achievements lately after China has finished administering more than one billion doses of its COVID-19 vaccines.
The World Health Organization (WHO) has now approved China's Sinovac and Sinopharm Covid vaccine for emergency use.
David Lin, president of Richmond-based GS Travel, said he hopes Canadian health authorities could approve vaccines made by Chinese companies in the coming months.
"Many Chinese tourists, who have received two doses of Sinovac and Sinopharm, are desperate to visit Canada once the travel restrictions are lifted," said Lin, adding that Sinopharm and Sinovac have now been widely approved in the Middle East and Latin America.