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Canada may allow fully vaccinated travellers by early September: Trudeau

TORONTO: Canada may permit fully vaccinated travellers into the country by early September, the country’s prime minister said on Thursday (Jul 15), if the current trend in vaccination rate and public health conditions continue. Justin Trudeau made the remarks in a call with Canadian provincial leaders, according to a readout of the call released by his office.

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He also said there were ongoing discussions with the United States to begin allowing fully vaccinated US citizens and permanent residents into Canada for non-essential travel by mid-August.

READ: COVAX to deliver about 1.4 billion COVID-19 doses over 6 months: Canada minister

“The Prime Minister noted that, if our current positive path of vaccination rate and public health conditions continue, Canada would be in a position to welcome fully vaccinated travellers from all countries by early September,” the statement said.  “He noted the ongoing discussions with the United States on reopening plans, and indicated that we could expect to start allowing fully vaccinated US citizens and permanent residents into Canada as of mid-August for non-essential travel.”

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Around 78 per cent of people aged 12 years or older in Canada have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, health officials said recently. About 44 per cent of people 12 years or older are fully vaccinated.

CANADA TO END CRUISE BAN IN NOVEMBER  On Thursday, Canada said it will allow large cruise ships to visit once again starting in November as the COVID-19 pandemic fades, but they must fully comply with public health requirements. Transport Minister Omar Alghabra said the ban would “no longer be in effect if operators are able to fully comply with public health requirements”. 

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READ: Canada will not welcome unvaccinated tourists for some time: PM Trudeau

“We will welcome cruise ships – an important part of our tourism sector – back in Canadian waters for the 2022 season,” Alghabra said.

The announcement allows the cruise and travel industries to “prepare in earnest to welcome cruise ships in 2022, while conveying a positive message to cruise lines eager to resume itinerary planning activities”, said Quebec-based association Cruise the Saint Lawrence, which organises cruise development along nine ports of the Saint Lawrence River. Canada has banned cruise ships for more than a year, and voted in February of this year to extend the ban until 2022. The ban extended to cruise liners and other ships with a holding capacity of more than 100 passengers and crew.

Canada saw a steady decline in coronavirus-related deaths in recent months thanks to widespread availability of vaccines.

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