The Canadian government's order to ban travellers who are not Canadian citizens, permanent residents or Americans was set to expire on Tuesday (June 30th).
Now, as a CBC News report confirms, Ottawa is now extending that ban until at least July 31st.
The order, which was set to expire later tonight, "has been extended until July 31 for public health reasons," Rebecca Purdy, spokesperson for the Canada Border Services Agency, said in a statement issued to CBC.
In a further statement issued to PAX, Purdy wrote:
"To protect Canadians and to ease the potential burden non-essential travellers could place on our health care system and its frontline workers, the CBSA has implemented travel restrictions across all ports of entry in all modes of transportation – land, sea, air and rail. All travel of an optional or discretionary nature, including tourism and recreation, is covered by these measures," she wrote.
The prohibitions, and exemptions, for entry into Canada from any country other than the U.S. are found in detail in the following Order in Council here.
The sweeping travel ban across Canada will not be modified to allow entry of foreign nationals from certain countries either, reports suggest.
For example: travellers from countries with low COVID-19 infection rates, or from countries that allow Canadian tourists to visit, will still be barred.
EU lifts restrictions on Canadians
The news comes on the same day that the European Union released its official "safe list" of countries whose citizens are allowed to visit Europe when it lifts its border restrictions on July 1st.
The Council of the EU adopted a recommendation on Tuesday (June 30th) on the gradual lifting of temporary restrictions on non-essential travel in the European Union, granting Canada - alongside 13 other countries - access.
Canadians are, however, still bound to a federal order to avoid non-essential travel outside of Canada as well as any cruise trip, until further notice. Canadians must also, by law, self-isolate for 14 days upon returning to Canada.
Extending the ban on foreign entry into Canada does not come as a surprise.
Trudeau being "very, very careful"
Last week, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau made it clear that his government is being “very, very careful” about when and how Canada will start reopening its international borders.
Speaking at his daily press briefing in Ottawa on Monday (June 22nd), Trudeau recognized that there are tourism operators and airlines that “would like us to be able to bring in tourists and allow people to come to Canada.”
“But they must understand, if we move forward too quickly, and if we’re not absolutely certain of what we’re doing at every step, we run the risk of getting into a second wave of infection as we’re seeing in certain places in the world,” Trudeau said, speaking in French, noting that such an outcome would reclose the economy and put everyone back into lockdown.
“Nobody wants that,” Trudeau said, recognizing that it’s a decision that may be difficult for some people.
The government has yet to release an exact date on when Canada could potentially reopen to international travel.
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