Travel quarantines endanger 8.7bn tourist revenue in Spain

Madrid, Jul 27 (efe-epa).- Fresh quarantines imposed for travelers in Europe could see an 8.7 billion euro loss of revenue for Spain, a tourism organization warned on Monday.

Authorities in the United Kingdom, Netherlands, Norway and France have imposed quarantines for travelers returning from Spain or advised against visiting the country.

Spain has seen a surge of Covid-19 infections in the last week, with the regions of Aragon and Catalonia particularly badly affected.

The new measures endanger 8.7 billion euros in income from international tourism in the country, according to Spain’s Alliance for Excellency in Tourism (Exceltur).

Reyes Maroto, Spain’s minister of industry, trade and tourism, said Monday the government is trying to negotiate with the UK to lift quarantines for travelers returning from the Balearic and Canary islands, which have low rates of infection.

She added that a number of Spanish communities, including Alicante on the Costa Blanca and Malaga on the Costa del Sol, have requested to be exempt from the UK restrictions.

There was a 1.5 percent drop in Spain’s stock exchange, the Ibex, on Monday in reaction to the announcement.

José Luis Zoreda, Exceltur executive vice president, criticized the British government for not giving any warning before reimposing a travel quarantine.

A number of travel businesses, including airlines easyJet and Jet2, have also spoken out against the sudden decision.

The UK’s largest tour operator TUI announced on Sunday the suspension of its holiday packages to Spain, apart from the Balearic and Canary islands.

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