New Zealand’s temporary ban on travellers from India comes at a time when the country has been reporting over 100,00 cases of the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) daily for the past three days.
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern on Thursday announced a temporary ban on travellers from India starting April 11 due to the massive increase in Covid-19 cases, news agency Reuters reported.
“I want to emphasize that while arrivals of COVID from India has prompted this measure, we are looking at how we manage high risk points of departure generally. This is not a country specific risk assessment…,” Jacinda Ardern was quoted as saying by Reuters.
The suspension of entry for all travellers, including New Zealand’s own citizens, begins from 4pm local time on April 11 and will be in place until April 28, the New Zealand PM was quoted as saying by the agency. During this time the government will look at risk management measures to resume travel, she added.
The temporary ban comes at a time when India has been reporting over 100,00 cases of the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) daily for the past three days. The country’s total case tally has gone up to 12.8 million, according to the Union ministry of health and family welfare.
Meanwhile, New Zealand has virtually eliminated the virus within its borders, and has not reported any community transmission locally for about 40 days, Reuters reported, adding that the country has been reviewing its border settings as more people with infections came recently, majority from India. New Zealand logged 23 new positive coronavirus cases at its border on Thursday, of which 17 were from India.
Jacinda Ardern said the rolling average of positive cases has witnessed a steady rise and it hit seven cases on Wednesday, which is the nation’s highest since last October. The country also reported one new locally infected case in a worker who was employed at a coronavirus managed isolation facility on Thursday. The 24-year-old was not vaccinated against the viral disease yet.
Following the massive spike in cases in India, several states have imposed restrictions on the travelling and have made it compulsory for passengers to carry a negative Covid-19 report while crossing borders. The government has speeded up the process of vaccination across the country to immunise more and more people against the virus. At present, everyone aged 45 years or above is eligible to get the Covid-19 vaccine.