Spain and Portugal unhappy with UK decision on travel green list

ByTravelling For Business

June 4, 2021
Busy beach

Spain has joined Portugal in expressing its disappointment at the UK’s latest decision on which countries should go on its green list for travel.

Spain remains on the UK’s amber list and the country’s industry and tourism minister Reyes Maroto told Cadena Ser radio: “I think they have been guided more by a criterion of prudence than by the real situation.”

Portugal is unhappy at being removed from the green list. From Tuesday anyone returning to the UK has to quarantine for 10 days. More details here.

A Swedish committee of MPs says the government failed in several elements of its handling of the pandemic: by acting slowly to bring in a test-and-trace system, not drawing up a law giving the national government wider powers to deal with the crisis, and not being fast enough in isolating care homes. Sweden avoided imposing a lockdown but the constitutional committee made no comment on that.

Serbia will start full production of Russia’s Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine today. Serbian and Russian officials will attend a ceremony at Belgrade’s Torlak Institute, which aims to produce four million doses over the next six months, for export as well as domestic use.

France has said it will allow Europeans who have had vaccinations into the country without a PCR test from 9 June. Transport minister Jean-Baptiste Djebbari made the announcement on French TV.

Germany’s seven-day incidence rate has continued to fall – it’s now down to 29.7 cases per 100,000 people. A further 86 deaths have been reported in the past 24 hours.

Travel industry chiefs have accused the government of going back on its own plans to introduce a so-called “green watch list”. Such a list would have warned travellers that countries were at risk of being taken off the green list, before they were actually moved off.

Let’s look at what the government said about the policy back in April.

Speaking to MPs, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said he wanted to avoid the chop and change we saw last summer over foreign travel.

He said: “We are taking a couple of different steps to try to help with that.

“One is to have a green watch list where we are able to flag up, perhaps a couple of weeks in advance, to say that we are looking at a [virus] variation of interest, which could turn into a [virus] variation of concern, in order to help provide a bit more forward guidance this year.”