European Union to reopen borders to travellers from 14 countries, including Australians

European Union to reopen borders to travellers from 14 countries, including Australians

European Union to reopen borders to travellers from 14 countries, including Australians

The European Union has agreed to keep the USA off an initial "safe list" of 14 countries from which it will allow non-essential travel starting in July, according to the European Council.

The EU extended its ban on travellers not just from the USA but from other big countries, such as Russia, Brazil and India, all of which are seeing rapidly rising caseloads.

The countries are Algeria, Australia, Canada, Georgia, Japan, Montenegro, Morocco, New Zealand, Rwanda, Serbia, South Korea, Thailand, Tunisia and Uruguay. China could be added to the list, subject to reciprocity, the EU Council said in a statement.

While the EU was set to vote on the decision last week on Saturday, EU member states needed more time to determine whether they could open external borders with the 14 (+1) countries considered to be safe.

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The report claims that at least 55 per cent of the 27 nation European Union members have signed the list.

More than 15 million Americans are estimated to travel to Europe each year, while some 10 million Europeans head across the Atlantic.

In addition, China could be included if it reciprocates by allowing travelers from the European Union.

Why it matters: It's an worldwide rebuke of the Trump administration's handling of the pandemic. But while strict lockdown measures have seen those numbers decline across Europe, in the USA there have been recent flare-ups in states such as Florida and Texas while President Donald Trump has encouraged society to reopen.

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In March, President Donald Trump suspended all people from Europe´s ID check-free travel zone from entering the USA, making it unlikely now that US citizens would qualify to enter the EU.

While the Government of Canada is still recommending against all non-essential global travel, Canadians will be able to take vacations to Europe as soon as the "safe list" has been officially confirmed.

For countries where travel restrictions continue to apply, the following categories are exempted: European Union citizens and their family members; long-term European Union residents and their family members; travelers with an essential function or need.

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