The European will continue to ban travellers from the United States and most other countries beyond July 1, EU diplomats tell DPA.
In an attempt to save the European tourism season, a list of 15 countries from where people should be allowed into the EU from 1 July has been agreed by representatives of the 27 member states.
Countries that will be allowed into the bloc, includes Australia, Canada, and Thailand.
Others are Algeria, Georgia, Japan, Montenegro, Morocco, New Zealand, Rwanda, Serbia, South Korea, Tunisia and Uruguay.
Visitors from the US, Russia, Brazil and India, where infection rates remain high, are set to remain excluded despite the initial arguments of some EU governments which would like to have offered further help in keeping the tourism industry afloat.
Chinese citizens will be allowed in principle – but only once China lifts its ban on EU citizens.
The European Council has now initiated the formal written procedure to pass the agreement, according to EU diplomats.
The agreement comes three months after the EU – plus Switzerland, Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein – closed its external borders to all non-essential travel due to the coronavirus pandemic.
It follows weeks of intense discussions between EU member states about which countries the group should open its borders to and which ones to ban.
The rules will take into account epidemiological factors, such as the number of new infections and whether the trend of cases is stable or decreasing.