The statistics on COVID-19 incidence gives no reason to hope that Ukraine will remain in the green zone for the European Union, Head of the Parliament Committee on Public Health, Medical Assistance and Medical Insurance Mykhailo Radutsky says.
“Ukraine is already in the red zone for the United States and Switzerland. The EU has given a delay of one week, most likely the EU will place us in the red zone. Unfortunately, statistics does not give us hope that we will remain in the green zone,” he said on the sidelines of Savik Shuster’s Freedom of Speech (Svoboda Slova) talk show on Friday night.
“We will wait for the next meeting of the European Commission,” Radutsky said.
Some countries of the European Union may temporarily restrict entry for citizens of Ukraine due to the increase in the incidence of coronavirus (COVID-19) and the exclusion of our country from the so-called “green zone,” but at the moment such a decision has not yet been made, Spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine Oleh Nikolenko has said.
“The European Union has not yet made a formal decision. However, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine has previously reported that in the event of an increase in the incidence of COVID-19 in Ukraine, the EU may adopt a recommendation to exclude our state from the list of countries whose citizens can make non-essential trips to the European Union. Brussels reviews the list of countries every two weeks and adjusts it depending on the development of the epidemic situation,” he said on Facebook.
The Foreign Ministry spokesperson said the epidemic situation is worsening not only in Ukraine and in recent weeks the EU has already significantly reduced the list of countries in the “green zone,” and some EU countries have already started to strengthen quarantine measures for their citizens.
“It is important to understand that […] if a decision is made, the EU does not automatically establish new rules for crossing the border, but only provides recommendations to the EU member states. […] Up-to-date information on the conditions of entry of Ukrainian citizens to each individual country of the EU and other countries of the world is available on the interactive map of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine: https://tripadvisor.mfa.gov.ua. It is updated in real time,” Nikolenko said.
He said that one should not expect a complete closure of borders, as last year, and vaccination in the future will remain one of the key conditions for unhindered entry into most countries.
The Foreign Ministry spokesperson also said that if the EU decides to exclude Ukraine from the green zone, it does not cancel the visa-free travel, but only introduces temporary restrictions on tourist trips to counter the spread of COVID-19 infection. “The decision can also be later revised at the next update of the list in case the epidemic situation improves,” the representative of the foreign ministry said.
According to Nikolenko, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine and the embassies are actively working with foreign partners so that even in the difficult conditions of the COVID-19 pandemic, the circle of countries open to travel for Ukrainian citizens remains as wide as possible and further expands.
As of June 14, according to the incidence rates of COVID-19, Ukraine entered the “green” zone according to the EU criteria, the Coronavirus-info Telegram channel reported.
According to the report, the country has reached the lowest incidence rates in the last year, in particular, an indicator of 74.71 cases of COVID-19 per 100,000 population was recorded, with the EU criterion of 75 cases per 100,000 population.
As reported, last week all regions of Ukraine entered the “green” epidemic zone of COVID-19 in accordance with the requirements of Ukrainian legislation.
As of June 9, all Ukrainian regions entered ‘green’ quarantine zone.
According to the press service of the Ministry of Health, the weakest quarantine restrictions are in effect in the “green” zone, including this level allows revising the approaches to anti-epidemic restrictions in terms of easing.
The “green” level is set simultaneously throughout Ukraine, if, in particular, the detection rate of cases of COVID-19 infection by PCR and by determination of the SARS-CoV-2 antigen is less than 5%.
In addition, the “green” level in the country is established if the incidence in at least 13 regions of Ukraine is less than 50% of the epidemiological threshold.
Ukraine will revise the indicators of the “green zone” in accordance with the updated EU indicators, said Minister of Health Viktor Liashko.
“We will change the indicators to reflect the indicators that are in effect in the EU. If we reach the indicators that are accepted in the EU and pass into the green zone, this will indicate that we will be able to visit EU countries even without vaccination passports. That is what we are striving for,” he told reporters on Saturday.
Ukraine’s neighboring countries, with the exception of Moldova, have entered the green zone for the spread of COVID-19, according to data published on the website of the Ministry of Health as of September 11.
The “red” zone includes countries with an incidence rate per 100,000 population over the past 14 days higher than in Ukraine (88.1). In total, there are as many as 47 countries.
The “red” zone, as before, includes Moldova (152.4 per 100,000). Romania moved from the “red” to the “green” zone (85.5 per 100,000).
France, Spain, Montenegro, U. S., Israel are also among the countries of the “red” zone.
The countries of the “green” zone include, in particular, India, Czech Republic, Austria, Belgium, the Netherlands, Italy, Sweden, Great Britain, Slovenia, Turkey, Egypt, Georgia, Finland, Switzerland, Germany, Bulgaria and Greece.
The closest neighbors of Ukraine, included in the green zone, are Belarus (25.7 per 100,000), Poland (21.5 per 100,000), Slovakia (24.8 per 100,000), Hungary (45.3 per 100,000), and the Russian Federation (44.5 per 100,000).