The Spanish foreign minister spoke against the French diplomat’s concerns about vacations in Portuguese and Spanish tourist destinations, while the latter’s tourist sites are still deteriorating due to frequent changes to the rules, according to which they discourage people from traveling.
Last week, France’s Minister of State for European Affairs, Clément Bonn, warned people to “avoid Spain and Portugal as a destination” as the French government is considering restricting travel to these countries, TheSchengen.com reports.
Arancha Gonzalez Laya, Spain’s foreign minister, said the current increase in COVID-19 infections was not leading to more hospitalizations and advised people to be “proportional” about how they handle the current phase of the pandemic.
This is a time for prudence, not panic. “There is no reason at the moment to ask people to cancel their holidays,” she said.
On the other hand, the French Foreign Minister, Yves Le Drian, indicated that vaccination against the virus is a must before traveling, saying that “the vaccine is the door to Spain.”
Tourism is a vital sector for the economies and jobs of the Iberian countries since it accounts for most of the GDP revenues of the respective countries, and the loss of European tourists like the French would be a huge blow.
Previously, Germany announced that Spanish travelers would have to undergo additional restrictions, as rates of COVID-19 cases in Spain were constantly increasing. As a result, since July 11, Spanish citizens traveling to Germany must provide proof of vaccination against COVID-19, proof of recent recovery from the virus, or negative test results.
Travelers who have been vaccinated with one of the vaccines approved by the European Medicines Agency (Moderna, Pfizer, AstraZeneca and Janssen) are not subject to quarantine entry restrictions, provided they present a certificate of vaccination.
In the past 24 hours, WHO data revealed that Spain has not reported any deaths or positive cases of COVID-19.
As of July 12, the European Disease Control and Prevention Program showed that 69.2 percent of the country had received at least one dose of the COVID vaccine, while 49.9 percent of the population had been fully vaccinated.
As previously reported by TheSchengen.com, Germany imposed strict entry requirements for Portugal, allowing non-essential travel to the country only last week.
The change in entry restrictions for arrivals from Portugal only came after the EU CEO and Portuguese Prime Minister criticized Germany’s decision, saying it was not in line with the EU’s approach to easing travel entirely for the summer season.