The European Union has included Morocco as well as Algeria and Tunisia to the list of countries whose residents qualify to enter the Schengen area as the bloc gears up to open its borders to the rest of the world amid the covid-19 pandemic.
The bloc is set to open its external borders from July as part of measures to ease the lockdown in place since March to limit the spread of the pandemic.
The European Union Member States have finally approved a list of 15 countries, considered as safe due to their epidemiological situation related to the Coronavirus, after days of discussions and disagreements.
As of July 1, citizens of Algeria, Australia, Canada, China (if it lifts its ban on travelers from the EU), Georgia, Japan, Montenegro, Morocco, New Zealand, Rwanda, Serbia, South Korea, Thailand, Tunisia and Uruguay, will be permitted to enter Europe Schengen Visa, media report.
However, the decision is not legally binding as the EU Member States are permitted to exclude some of the countries from the list when it comes to who can enter their borders.
The ‘safe list’ will be reviewed every two weeks and adjusted depending on the latest Coronavirus developments in each country.
The list was drawn on the basis of several parameters including trends in published pandemic infection rates and whether these are currently higher or lower than those in the EU’s 27 countries.
So far, Algeria confirmed 13,571 cases including 9,674 recoveries and 905 deaths; Morocco, 12,385 cases including 8,839 recoveries and 224 fatalities; and Tunisia reported 1,172 cases including 1,029 recoveries and 50 deaths.