Spain to reopen borders with EU from 21 June

Madrid, Jun 14 (efe-epa).- Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez announced on Sunday the Mediterranean country will reopen its borders with the rest of the European Union from 21 June.

Spain closed its borders when the government announced a state of alarm on 14 March in a bid to slow the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.

Sánchez announced during a weekly video conference that travelers from other EU countries will be able to freely enter the country from 21 June, when the state of alarm expires.

“From then, there will no longer be an obligation for quarantine for those entering our country,” he added.

The only exception will be Portugal, which will wait until 1 July at the request of its government.

There have been more than 243,600 cases and 27,100 Covid-19 deaths in Spain, which has begun de-escalating restrictions after bring the rate of infection under control.

International arrivals from outside the Schengen area will be able to freely enter the country from 1 July, as long as the nations meet certain requirements.

“Firstly, their epidemiological situation, which will have to be similar or better than that of the European Union,” Sánchez said.

“Secondly, they’ll have to accept some health measures related to origin, travel and destination. And lastly, it will have to be reciprocal.”

Tourism is a key industry for Spain’s economy, representing around 12 percent of its GDP, and businesses in the sector have been campaigning for the travel restrictions to be lifted.

Sánchez also announced that the government will unveil a tourism promotion plan on Thursday.

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