Believe it or not, there are countries without coronavirus, let's have a look and see which ones they are! (Updated: 1st June 2020)
The spread of the coronavirus took us all by surprise, and the speed at which it has spread all over the world is alarming. So much so, that it is almost hard to believe that some countries still have no reported cases of the Coronavirus/COVID-19.
Well, there are in fact countries without Coronavirus!
The UN officially recognises 193 countries.
As of June 1 2020, only 12 countries have not confirmed any cases of COVID-19. Many of these countries are Pacific Island countries in Oceania.
IMPORTANT NOTE: this is largely self-declared and some have certainly raised scepticism among observers (and us!).
This list is not necessarily backed by the opinion of professionals such as the World Health Organisation.
Below is a list of countries without coronavirus that currently has declared no cases of COVID-19.
1. North Korea 🇰🇵
2. Turkmenistan 🇹🇲
3. Solomon Islands 🇸🇧
4. Vanuatu 🇻🇺
5. Samoa 🇼🇸
6. Kiribati 🇰🇮
7. Federated States of Micronesia 🇫🇲
8. Tonga 🇹🇴
9. Marshall Islands 🇲🇭
10. Palau 🇵🇼
11. Tuvalu 🇹🇻
12. Nauru 🇳🇷
As of 01/06/2020, these countries all have no reported cases of the COVID-19 novel Coronavirus.
So how did these countries manage to be amongst the very few to have no cases of a virus that has affected more than a million people worldwide?
Let's take a look at the countries without coronavirus in more detail, and perhaps get an insight into why they currently have no reported cases of Coronavirus.
(In population descending order).
North Korea was the first country to close its borders.
As a neighbour of China, the country closed its borders on January 21st and hasn't re-opened since. It then implemented strict measures for those coming into the country (foreigners and nationals) including month or two-month quarantine.
While the North Korean authorities report zero cases one might wonder how China's nearest neighbour could truly be free of the virus. We suggest you do a good bit of research for a more balanced opinion!
Turkmenistan is a country in Central Asia bordered by Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Iran, and Afghanistan - all countries with reports of coronavirus infections. Most of the land borders were closed more than a month ago, and in early February Turkmenistan cancelled many flights and all flights to and from China.
There are rumours that the official reports may not quite match the official statement, and it was also brought to the media attention that Turkmenistan had allegedly "banned" the word Coronavirus, although this wasn't exactly true.
The Solomon Islands is amongst one of the least visited countries in the world. You can access it easily from close countries with direct flights, including Australia, Papua New Guinea, and Vanuatu.
Since early February, like many Pacific Island countries, the Solomon Islands required a medical certificate to allow entry. Travellers who enter from infected countries required 14-day quarantine.
Vanuatu has no reported cases and implemented strict policies for those coming in from overseas from February. Those travelling from infected countries were not permitted or had to undergo quarantine, and anyone arriving into the country had to provide a medical certificate.
Samoa has been on lockdown since 25th March.
A state of emergency remains in place and all international travel in and out of the country has been suspended.
There are no cases in Kiribati, but a state of public emergency has been declared. From 30th March, schools closed for 2 weeks.
Micronesia was quick to implement travel bans in early February, including entire travel bans for those travelling from China and Chinese citizens.
Tonga has been strict with travel rules since February.
Since Fiji's first reported case of coronavirus, Tonga closed its borders to foreigners and only allowed foreigners to leave who were travelling back on flights to their own countries. As of 29th of March, Tonga has been in lockdown. And locked-down our tour leader Zoe with it!
8 suspected cases were tested, all came back negative.
On 21st March, it was reported that the only international flight connection with the Marshall Islands ceased service temporarily for at least 3 weeks.
There is currently one person under investigation for having coronavirus after having travelled from Guam, however, there are currently no coronavirus infections in Palau.
Often known as one of, if not the, least visited country in the world, Tuvalu sees fewer than 200 tourists per year. This has probably been a massive help in preventing an outbreak in this country with a very small population.
Nauru, a country so small that you can walk around it in one day, has also managed to stay coronavirus-free. Along with Tuvalu, it holds the record for being one of the least visited countries in the world.