Transport secretary Grant Shapps has announced six more countries that have been added to the UK’s travel quarantine list.
Brits travelling from France, the Netherlands, Monaco, Malta, Turks & Caicos and Aruba must self-isolate for 14 days upon arrival. The move came after Prime Minister Boris Johnson said ministers would be “absolutely ruthless” in deciding on whether to impose the measures on a host of new nations.
The Foreign Office has now updated its advice to warn against all but essential travel to the six nations because of the heightened risk of infection.
The decision to remove a country from the safe travel list is based on the spread of the virus, with the latest 14-day cumulative figures showing 32.1 Covid-19 cases per 100,000 people in France, compared with 18.5 in the UK.
Department for Transport officials said that data from France shows that over the past week there has been a 66% increase in newly reported cases and a 52% increase in weekly incidence rate per 100,000 population, indicating a sharp rise in COVID-19.
In the Netherlands, there has been a 52% increase in newly reported cases over the past four weeks. Over the past week, there has been a 273% increase in newly reported cases in Turks & Caicos and 1,106% increase in newly reported cases in Aruba. Meanwhile, Malta has had a 105% increase in newly reported cases over the past week.
Johnson said the Government could not allow the UK’s population to be “reinfected or the disease to come back in. That is why the quarantine measures are very important and we have to apply them in a very strict way.”