No China travel ban, Antigua will not follow Jamaica’s lead amid virus concerns

By Carl Joseph

Jamaica has announced a travel ban between China and the Caribbean island, amid concerns over the deadly coronavirus.

Antigua, however, will not be following suit – at least not yet.

“We took a decision… that a travel advisory would be issued where persons in China, who were planning to travel to the island will be advised or asked to remain in China,” Dr Tufton said on Tuesday after a suspected case of the illness in Kingston sparked alarm across the region.

The advisory, Tufton said, would also extend to Jamaican nationals and Chinese nationals who were planning to make trips to China.

“We’re advising them to postpone, at least for the time being, those travel arrangements that they would have made or are planning to make,” Dr Tufton added.

The minister had no specific timeline for the expected length of the newly-imposed ban. The advisory will also be extended to potential in-transit travellers.

“Our quarantine protocols will be put into place, where persons would either be quarantined in specially designed facilities or within their home environment depending on their particular circumstance and depending on the risk assessment that would be done,” the minister explained.
The quarantine arrangements will reflect the two to 14-day incubation period consistent with the virus.

Meanwhile, Antigua and Barbuda health officials say they have no immediate plans to issue similar travel restrictions between the twin island nation and China.