New York : The Biden administration is expected to announce on June 17 that the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will lift its requirement for travellers to test negative for Covid-19 before entering the US, according to reports.
The move will go into effect for US-bound air travellers at midnight on June 19, reports added.
The CDC is lifting the restriction after the travel industry of the country lobbied against for months as they felt it was no longer necessary "based on the science and data," said a senior administration official of CDC.
It may be mentioned here that the measure has been in place since January 2021.
Reports claimed, the Biden administration plans to work with airlines to ensure a smooth transition with the change, but it will likely be a welcome move for most in the industry.
The CDC said, "The Covid-19 pandemic has now shifted to a new phase, due to the widespread uptake of highly effective Covid-19 vaccines, the availability of effective therapeutics, and the accrual of high rates of vaccine- and infection-induced immunity at the population level in the United States. Each of these measures has contributed to lower risk of severe disease and death across the United States."
Reports cited, the travel industry, and some scientific experts, said the policy had been out of date for months.
White House officials met last month with travel industry officials, who pressed the Biden administration to end its requirements that vaccinated international travellers take a coronavirus test before flying to the United States.
Airlines for America said its members -- including American Airlines, United Airlines, Southwest Airlines and Delta Air Lines -- had believed lifting the requirements would lead more foreigners to visit the US.
The trade association said that in mid-May, domestic travel came within 7 percentage points of pre-pandemic levels, but international travel lagged at 14 per cent below normal.
"Prior to the pandemic, travel was one of our nation's largest industry exports. The lifting of this requirement will enable the industry to lead the way toward a broader US economic and jobs recovery," US Travel Association President and CEO Roger Dow said in a statement.
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