SEOUL, Jan. 14 (Korea Bizwire) — South Korea’s new COVID-19 cases fell to the lowest for a Saturday in three months, showing signs of a slowdown in the pandemic.
The country reported 36,699 new COVID-19 infections, including 99 cases from overseas, bringing the total caseload to 29,774,321, the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA) said.
The tally marked the lowest for any Saturday since Oct. 22, when the country reported 26,892 new cases.
The country added 45 COVID-19 deaths, bringing the death toll to 32,912. The number of critically ill patients came to 505, down from 511 the previous day, the KDCA said.
The South Korean government has been closely watching overseas visitors amid the recent surge in infections in China following Beijing’s lifting of its zero-COVID policy in December.
Of the 99 new cases of overseas infections reported Saturday, 65, or 65.7 percent, were from China, the public health agency said.
Last week, Seoul began requiring arrivals from China to present a negative PCR or antigen test for the coronavirus before boarding and undergo a post-entry PCR test in a move to slow the overseas inflow of the virus.
Travelers from Hong Kong and Macao also have to show a negative pre-entry virus test.
In a retaliative move against the strengthened quarantine curb, China suspended issuing short-term visas for South Koreans, starting Tuesday.