The European Union officially removed Canada from a list of countries that should not be subjected to incoming travel restrictions during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The 27-nation bloc first put out a list of 15 countries in July that were deemed to be lower risk for transmission of the coronavirus that causes COVID-19. Canada was on the original list and survived the first culling of the list to 11 names in August when Serbia, Montenegro, Algeria and Morocco were booted.
On Thursday, the EU published the new list, and Canada, Georgia and Tunisia had been removed.
“As a result of these discussions, the list of third countries — should be amended. In particular, Canada, Georgia and Tunisia should be deleted from the list while Singapore should be added,” the EU said.
The new list consists of:
- New Zealand.
- South Korea.
- China, subject to confirmation of reciprocity.
The EU also said restrictions should be lifted on people coming from Hong Kong and Macao, as long as those jurisdictions do the same for European travellers.
The list does not mean Canadians are forbidden from travelling to the EU, as it is merely a guideline for member nations to follow. But the bloc does nonetheless urge countries to abide by it for everyone’s benefit.
“Member states should … ensure that measures taken at the external borders are co-ordinated in order to ensure a well functioning Schengen area,” the EU said, referring to the 26 European nations that have agreed to allow free travel across their borders, as per an agreement signed in 1985 in Schengen, Luxembourg.
But “the authorities of the member states remain responsible for implementing the content of the recommendation [and] they may, in full transparency, lift only progressively travel restrictions towards countries listed.”