Lifting of travel restrictions

The Biden administration lift international travel restrictions in under pressure on May 1.

According to a recent report by USA Today, the US airline industry and other travel-related businesses are urging the White House to draft a plan. Within the next five weeks to lift international travel restrictions that were put in place in the early days of the COVID-19 and restore normal international travel.

More than two dozen groups made their demands in the letter. Which was sent to the White House on Monday. Including the main trade group for the nation’s largest Airlines, Airlines for America, the U.S. Travel Association and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. They set a May 1 target for the government to “work with us” to lift year-long restrictions on international travel.

The airline industry first wants to see travel bans in place in Europe, China and elsewhere lifted. In addition, they want people who have been vaccinated against COVID-19 to be exempted from testing requirements before entering the United States. They also want the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to say publicly that vaccinated people are safe to travel.

The U.S. airline industry hopes the measures will accelerate the recovery of the travel and aviation industries.

Tourism has been hit hard during the outbreak.

More recently, the airline industry has begun to pick up as the number of new cases. And deaths from COVID-19 in the United States has declined and nearly 45 million Americans (more than 13 percent of the U.S. population) have been vaccinated. More than 1 million people have passed through airport security every day for the past 11 days. With Sunday’s screenings topping 1.5 million for the first time in more than a year. But passenger traffic is still well below normal levels for 2019.

On the other hand, Chinese authorities have also released a message. China will cooperate with other countries in the world on the issue of vaccination. And recognize the vaccines administered by other countries. Now only those who have been vaccinated will be exempted from the test if they return home.

It has been reported that Israel, Thailand and other countries will recognize the “vaccine passport” with China. Once a bilateral digital “vaccine passport” between China and Thailand is reached. Tourists with vaccine passports will no longer be quarantined in Thailand. It is estimated that more than 60 countries/regions will obtain mutual recognition of vaccine passports with China before the summer break in August.

For the Chinese, it is natural to hope that the United States and China will soon recognize each other’s vaccines.

It will no longer be a problem for people who want to travel to China but have already received vaccines. Such as Pfizer, Oxford or Johnson & Johnson in the United States. Or for their overseas compatriots who want to get vaccinated at home.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying held a regular press conference on Tuesday, according to the ministry’s website. China may allow vaccinators from all countries to enter the country.

Hua Chunying: Vaccines are a powerful weapon against the virus and also a hope to save lives. Whether it is a Chinese vaccine or a foreign vaccine. As long as it is safe and effective, it is a good vaccine. On the basis of fully accommodating each other’s concerns and friendly consultations. China is ready to explore with other countries the establishment of flexible and diversified mechanisms of mutual benefit. With regard to the contents of mutual recognition and reciprocal measures, China holds an open position. And will make appropriate arrangements based on the opinions of experts.

As a matter of fact, China is discussing with relevant countries to make reciprocal arrangements for their respective personnel to receive COVID-19 vaccine. 

As long as it is conducive to the prevention and control of the epidemic and facilitating personnel exchanges, we are open and positive.

The normalization of personnel exchanges has entered the agenda of China and the United States.

Last week, a meeting between China and the United States in Anchorage, Alaska, drew global attention. According to state media, the meeting touched on people-to-people exchanges between the two countries.

The two sides discussed adjusting travel and visa policies in light of the epidemic situation. And gradually normalizing personnel exchanges between China and the United States, Xinhua said.

 

This shows that the two sides have already mentioned the issues of visa and travel to each other on the agenda.

In addition to the U.S. -China travel ban, The U.S. State Department is now working to resume U.S. visa operations around the world as soon as possible. The travel ban is tied to the visa business. And once the travel ban is lifted, U.S. visa services are expected to be fully restored by mid-2021.

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