December 3, 2021

Bad news for South Africa on UK’s travel ‘red list’

The UK authorities says that it’s going to not take away South Africa from its ‘red list’ of nations and danger compromising its Covid-19 programme.

The federal government was responding to a petition that acquired greater than 26,000 signatures calling for the travel ban to be lifted.

The present measures allow entry to solely British and Irish Nationals arriving from high-risk nations – generally known as pink listing nations – who’re required to quarantine in government-managed inns.

The UK’s division of transport stated that nation allocations to the site visitors gentle system are reviewed each three weeks except regarding proof means it must act quicker to guard public well being.

“At the most recent review on 4 August, it was decided that South Africa would remain on the red list as South Africa continues to present a high public health risk to the UK from known variants of concern,” it stated.

It added that an inflow of infections from South Africa and different nations might doubtlessly derail its personal efforts.

“We will not compromise on the progress we have made on our vaccine programme by allowing people to freely mix abroad and return or travel to the UK without proper checks and procedures. This is just the start for opening international travel, with the UK leading the way with a robust system.”

“As with all our coronavirus measures, we keep the red list under regular review and our priority remains to protect the health of the public in the UK.”

The subsequent pink listing evaluation is predicted happen within the coming days.

Expensive ban 

A latest examine printed by the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) confirmed that the South African financial system is dropping over R180 million each week it stays on the UK’s pink listing.

Based mostly on 2019 UK customer numbers and spending, the worldwide tourism physique’s analysis reveals these restrictions might symbolize losses of over R790 million each month. This equates to greater than R26 million on daily basis.

“The impact the UK’s traffic light system imposes on ‘red list’ countries is not only damaging the Travel and Tourism sector, but also economies around the world,” stated Virginia Messina, senior vice chairman of the WTTC.

“Our data shows that every day South Africa remains on the UK’s ‘red list’, the country faces losing millions of dollars, effectively delaying the global socio-economic recovery.”

Messina stated that the pandemic has additionally value a whole bunch of hundreds of jobs in South Africa, pushing extra individuals into poverty. This makes it essential to restart secure worldwide travel and cut back mobility restrictions, she stated.

Greater than half of all adults have been absolutely vaccinated within the UK, which considerably reduces the chance of any residents travelling overseas, the WTTC stated.

Whereas the vaccine rollout has picked up the tempo, the determine is significantly decrease in South Africa.

Due to this fact, it’s vital for the South African authorities to proceed ramping up the vaccination programme to restart worldwide travel and allow financial restoration, Messina stated.

The WTTC’s annual Financial Impression Report (EIR) report reveals that in 2019, South Africa was among the many hottest locations for UK travellers, accounting for 7% of worldwide customer spending, representing R9.4 billion.

The EIR additionally reveals the impact COVID-19 had on South Africa’s financial system, with the Travel and Tourism sector’s contribution to the nationwide financial system falling from  363 billion (6.9%) in 2019 to only R182 billion (3.7%) in 2020.

Worldwide customer spending additionally plummeted by 66%, from greater than R134 billion in 2019 to only R46 billion in 2020.

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