The UNWTO and WHO urge lifting of travel bans

The UNWTO and WHO urge lifting of travel bans

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Published on : Saturday, February 26, 2022


The UNWTO and WHO have urged lifting of travel bans, since they do not provide added value and contribute to economic and social stress. The two UN agencies agreed to work together on global trust architecture for reviving the travel sector.

A growing number of countries around the world have started easing their rules for international arrivals, including easing of travel bans. These decisions are in agreement withWHO’s latest recommendations for safe international mobility, which highlight the futility of blanket restrictions in curbing virus transmissions.

In Geneva, the leaders of the UNWTO and WHO agreed on the importance of easing or lifting travel bans. Blanket restrictions need to be replaced with risk-based, evidence-informed, context-specific policies.

The UNWTO Secretary-General, ZurabPololikashvilisaid, “Guided by UNWTO, global tourism has followed WHO advice from the very start of this crisis.” Pololikashvilistressed the need to “continue to do so, and to open up again, safely and responsibly, and allow tourism to deliver on its unique potential as a driver of recovery and growth.”

“As countries ease travel restrictions, health must remain the key priority. By basing their decisions on evidence and a risk-based approach adapted to their specific context, countries can find the right balance between keeping people safe, protecting livelihoods and the economy, and keeping borders open”, said WHO Director-General Dr.TedrosAdhanomGhebreyesus.

The two UN agencies also highlighted the need for clear and consistent rules relating to health and travel.

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