Airports Council International (ACI) World has called on governments globally to take a coordinated and risk-based approach when managing inbound travellers from China.

The organisation’s call comes in response to the implementation of travel restrictions by several countries due to the resurgence of COVID-19 in China.

“We can’t repeat past mistakes. We are working with ICAO and other international organisations to protect connectivity, which is vital to fully restoring the travel, trade, and tourism that provide economic and social benefits to communities worldwide,” said ACI World director general Luis Felipe de Oliveira.

“As such, we welcome the Government of China’s plan to lift COVID-19 quarantine requirements for international arrivals. As the last major economy in the world to re-open its borders, the decision represents a key milestone in the recovery of air travel. We now call on them to go further and re-assess their testing requirements as well.

de Oliveira continued: “In order to ensure the smooth recovery of air traffic and the benefits this brings, cooperation and the establishment of standards through ICAO, WHO and others that harmonise the processes for international travel between countries are crucial. Several states are now reactively re-introducing COVID-19 testing and other health measures for travellers from China.

“ACI World strongly reiterates that if any health-related travel measures are deemed necessary, that they be risk- and evidence-based. It is imperative for governments to have a harmonised response and to coordinate this response with other countries and aviation stakeholders. Let’s not take two steps backwards but continue to move forward with the valuable lessons learned from the past.”

Image: ACI World