Thursday 16.07.2020
DE-ESCALATION

Finland to lift travel restrictions to 12 European states from July 13

Travel restrictions will continue in force for other 10 countries, including Sweden. Government's recommendation to work remotely will end on 1 August due to the improved epidemiological situation.
From left to right: Ministers Ohisalo, Haavisto, Harakka and Kosonen. Photo: Lauri Heikkinen/Vnk.
From left to right: Ministers Ohisalo, Haavisto, Harakka and Kosonen. Photo: Lauri Heikkinen/Vnk.

The Finnish government has made new decisions on Tuesday regarding the de-escalation process, based on the assessment of the crisis follow-up group headed by Permanent Secretary Martti Hetemäki. In addition, Sanna Marin's cabinet received a briefing on the current epidemiological situation.

The decisions were explained at a press conference by the Ministers of Interior, Maria Ohisalo; Foreign Affairs, Pekka Haavisto; Transport and Communications, Timo Harakka and Science and Culture, Hanna Kosonen.

Travel and tourism

According to the information released by the Prime Minister's office, the government agreed that as of 13 July, internal border control and restrictions on traffic between Finland and other 12 European states will be lifted. Those are countries where the incidence of coronavirus is similar to that of Norway, Denmark, Iceland and the Baltic states, where border control has already been lifted

At present, the limit value is a maximum of eight new cases of the disease per 100,000 persons in the previous 14 days, the Government explained.

Based on the current development of the epidemic, internal border control could therefore be lifted for the following 9 Schengen countries: Germany, Italy, Austria, Greece, Switzerland, Slovakia, Slovenia, Hungary and Liechtenstein.

In addition, travel to Finland from Croatia, Cyprus and Ireland, which are EU Member States but not part of the Schengen area, would be allowed.

Border control and travel restrictions would continue between Finland and the Netherlands, Belgium, Spain, Luxembourg, Malta, Portugal, Poland, France, Sweden and the Czech Republic, with the exception of leisure boating.

However, the government will continue to assess the overall situation and will update the list of countries based on the development of the epidemic. The final decision will be made in the government's plenary session on 10 July.

Remote work and persons over 70

In its meeting, the Government also stated that the recommendation on extensive remote work would end on 1 August due to the improved epidemiological situation.

Again, the Government will review the matter if the development of the epidemic so requires.

The Government also lifted its recommendation to avoid physical contact for people aged 70 or over. However, it reminds that in close contacts, it is advisable to take a cautious approach using individual discretion and taking the overall situation and the individual risk factors into account.

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