As the United States begins reopening, government officials are acknowledging the long and arduous process of reopening the borders to visitors from China, Europe and other international destinations.
According to Reuters.com, White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow said the eventual easing and lifting of travel restrictions would depend heavily on the health and safety protocols implemented by each country.
The administration of U.S. President Donald Trump instituted a temporary ban on most travelers coming from China in January and then expanded the order to travelers from Europe and other impacted nations in March.
Senior U.S. officials told Reuters that travelers from other countries will not be permitted to enter the country if American citizens are allowed in those nations. With the U.S. in the midst of an outbreak and the highest number of infections, countries may be hesitant to accept American travelers.
While the European Union is looking to reopen internal borders, it will keep external borders shuttered until at least until mid-June. With the U.S. ban on Europe being so broad, it will eventually need to be replaced by agreements with each individual country.
Opening up the U.S. to international travel as soon as it’s safe is important to the country’s economy, as the U.S. Travel Association said spending by people arriving from other nations supported 1.2 million jobs and $33.6 billion in wages last year.
Several airlines in America would like to resume service to China, but existing political issues between the U.S government and Beijing could complicate the process. China has also imposed restrictions on foreign carriers by allowing only one flight into the country per week.