Authorities of the Caribbean island maintain that more than 70% of contagion cases in recent months are linked to travelers from abroad
Cuba, with just over 11 million inhabitants, was one of the countries that had the best control of the coronavirus pandemic ( COVID-19 ), but in recent months health measures were relaxed, especially when the authorities decided to open their borders last November, which caused a considerable spike in infections, hospitalizations and deaths from the disease.
According to Francisco Durán, director of epidemiology at the Ministry of Public Health, the Caribbean country has so far registered 25,674 positive cases and 213 deaths since the health crisis began; However, only in January 2021, there were 13,616 infected, as well as 67 deaths.
Even on the last day 910 infected people were detected, of which 847 were autochthonous and 63 imported cases.
Against this background, the Government decided to temporarily reduce flights from Mexico, the United States, Panama, the Dominican Republic, Colombia, and the Bahamas, to one every 15 days. While flights from Nicaragua, Guyana, Trinidad and Tobago, Haiti, and Suriname will be suspended.
Havana is one of the favorite destinations abroad for Mexican travelers (Photo: Archive)
In addition, tourists who arrive on the island as of February 6 will be subjected to a PCR test at the airport and then transferred to hotels to spend five-day isolation with medical surveillance so that a second test can be applied, and in case if negative, they will be able to leave the isolation; It is worth mentioning that all expenses will be borne by the visitors.
Likewise, all people who test positive will be hospitalized.
In turn, residents of Cuba will be placed in isolation centers for free until the results of their PCR tests are negative.
And it is that the Cuban authorities maintain that more than 70% of the cases are linked to travelers, mainly Cubans and Cuban-Americans who visit their families on the island, where sanitary protocols in homes have been relaxed.
Canada cancels flights to Mexico
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speaks during a press conference on the spread of the coronavirus disease (Photo: Reuters)
This Friday, January 29, the government of Canada and the main airlines of that country announced temporarily canceling flights to Mexico and the Caribbean, from this Sunday until April 30, as a measure to contain the spread of the new variant of Covid- 19.
In a conference, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said that “now is not the time to fly” and ordered that those arriving in Canada must remain in quarantine in hotels for at least three days under strict supervision and cover their expenses; accommodation in this situation can reach 2,000 Canadian dollars (32,231 pesos).
The measure represents a blow to the Mexican economy, given that it is the second most important market in terms of tourism, only behind the United States.
According to data from the Ministry of Tourism (Sectur), in 2020 the arrival of Canadians represented 13% of all foreign air travelers, while the proportion from the US was 63 percent.
Every year, Mexico received thousands of young Canadians who enjoyed the “Springbreak” season in destinations such as Los Cabos and Cancun (Photo: EFE)
According to the Mexican Federation of Tourist Associations ( Fematur ), Canadians prefer to visit beach destinations such as Los Cabos, Acapulco, Huatulco, Cancun and the Riviera Maya; with an average expense of USD 400 (8,236 pesos).
Therefore, Sectur and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (SRE) called on the Canadian government to reconsider the restrictions.
“The government of Mexico vows that the most recent measure announced by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau can be withdrawn as soon as possible in order to prevent a deep economic crisis in the North American region, ” the agencies said in a statement.