OTTAWA- Canada will start cautiously lifting border restrictions for fully vaccinated citizens and other eligible people on July 5 but U.S. and other foreign travelers will still be excluded, the government said on Monday.
From 11:59 p.m. EDT on July 5 (0359 GMT on July 6), those who have received two doses of a COVID-19 vaccine will no longer have to spend time in quarantine. The relaxation of the measures applies to Canadians and permanent residents.
"This is the first phase of our precautionary approach to easing Canada's border measures. At this time we are not opening up our borders any further," Intergovernmental Affairs Minister Dominic LeBlanc said in a statement. Ottawa first announced the plan on June 9.
Canada and the United States first banned non-essential travel in March 2020 as a part of the effort to fight COVID-19, and the two countries have extended the measures on a monthly basis ever since.
The restrictions, which exclude trade in goods, are now due to expire on July 21, 2021. The measures have hit the travel and airline industries, which along with U.S. politicians are insisting Ottawa do much more to open the border
The Canadian government said it would "continue to consider further targeted measures at the borders and when to lift or adjust them" but gave no precise details.
(Reporting by David Ljunggren, Editing by Franklin Paul and Paul Simao) ((email@example.com; +1 647 480 7891))