The detection of the Omicron variant saw many countries impose travel restrictions on several Southern African countries, including South Africa.
Earlier this year, President Cyril Ramaphosa criticised the travel bans, saying the restrictions defied scientific logic, and was unjustified and discriminatory.
Netherlands has now become the latest country to lift its strict travel restrictions on Southern African countries. This comes after the UK government’s decision to remove South Africa, Angola, Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, Zambia and Zimbabwe from the ‘Red list’.
After updating its rules, the Dutch government stated that passengers must still meet test and quarantine requirements.
As per the regulations, all travellers older than 12 years of age must be in possession of a negative polymerase chain reaction PCR test not older than 48-hours before departure or an antigen test that’s up to 24-hours old before departure from their country.
Travellers from ‘high-risk’ countries like South Africa, must self-quarantine for 10 days even if they have proof of vaccination or proof of recovery. This quarantine period can be shortened if they get tested by the municipal health service (GGD) on day five of the quarantine and the result is negative.
“Travelers must always have a completed quarantine declaration, even if you do not have to quarantine,” the Dutch government said.