Helsinki, Jul 7 (IANS): Travellers fully vaccinated against Covid-19, or with proof of having recovered from the disease, can enter Finland without any additional tests from Monday, the Finnish government said at a press conference on Tuesday.
Besides, people from countries and regions defined by Finland as "safe" can enter the country without testing as of Monday, too. The temporary changes on entry policy are valid until mid-October, said the government.
Travellers without the required full vaccinations, nor with documents showing recovery from the disease, must be tested upon their arrival in Finland. A person coming with a negative Covid-19 test result less than three days old can enter the country, but must be tested within three to five days. Persons with only one dose of the vaccine must be tested on the border as well, said the government.
The revised legislation on border health security, on which the new entry policy is based, was passed by the parliament last Friday and signed into law by President Sauli Niinisto on Tuesday, the Xinhua news agency reported.
According to a list published at the government website, the countries and regions eligible as safe from Monday would be Australia, the Chinese mainland, the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (SAR), the Macao SAR, Iceland, Israel, Malta, Poland, San Marino, Singapore, New Zealand, the Vatican and several municipalities in Norway.
Though Finland is well in progress with the first dose of vaccinating, it is under the European Union average in the full vaccination progress, said Taneli Puumalainen, head of the Department of Safety and Health at the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health.
Puumalainen said that two doses are necessary for combatting the Delta-variant of the novel coronavirus, therefore a strict approach is necessary, adding the "safe" region list will be reviewed in August.