TORONTO — The still-closed Canada-U.S. border was reportedly a topic of discussion this past weekend at the G7 Summit, however there are no new updates yet from those talks between Prime Minister Trudeau and President Biden.
With Canada’s vaccination rate climbing – it’s now at 64% for the first dose, and 12% for the second – and with 43% of Americans now fully vaccinated, pressure is on both countries to decide how much longer to keep the border closed.
Speaking on condition of anonymity to reporters on the trip, a federal official said Trudeau and Biden discussed the border when they talked on the side of another session with G7 leaders.
The two leaders talked about the steps both countries are considering to “cautiously” and “gradually” make changes to the border closure, the official said.
The next renewal date for the border closure is June 21, just one week away. Rumours have been ramping up in recent days that some restrictions could be eased for fully vaccinated travellers.
Meanwhile the EU’s Digital COVID Certificate got the green light from EU lawmakers last week, and more than a dozen countries in the EU are now using the system to facilitate safer travel within the 27-country bloc.
For the past several months Canada has indicated its intention to collaborate with its G7 counterparts on any system of proof of vaccination required for international travel.
An article posted this past weekend at TheStar.com looks at vaccine passports, vaccine certification and the latest details – which, as Ottawa Bureau Tonda MacCharles notes, are still few and far between.
The Star article, ‘Want to travel? Here’s how you will prove you are vaccinated‘, follows on the heels of the federal government’s June 9 announcement that starting sometime in early July, fully vaccinated Canadians returning to Canada will no longer need to do the 3-day hotel quarantine, and will only need to quarantine at home until they receive a negative PCR test result.
MacCharles notes that the ArriveCAN app, already in use during the pandemic for uploading test results, quarantine plans and the like, will likely be the go-to platform for uploading proof of vaccination as well, at least in these early stages.
Canada’s travel advisory against all non-essential travel is still in place, however the elimination of the hotel quarantine, and the eased home quarantine restrictions, are seen as a major step forward in travel’s restart.
Another article over the weekend in the consumer media, from the CBC, looks at post-pandemic arrival and departure logistics for Canada’s airports, in an interview with Daniel Gooch, Preisdent, Canadian Airports Council.
With file from The Canadian Press