BREAKING | Ramaphosa to announce limited international travel, Level 1 – sources

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President Cyril Ramaphosa.

  • Cabinet is expected to decide on Wednesday on the resumption of international travel.
  • But there are strings attached. 
  • The NCCC has recommended strict visa requirements for anyone entering the country. 

President Cyril Ramaphosa’s Cabinet is expected to agree to the resumption of international travel and the reopening of borders on Wednesday.

However, understands that the Natjoints have warned against opening up South Africa’s borders for international tourists en masse, citing fears of a second wave of Covid-19 infections. 

Ramaphosa is expected to announce the move to Level 1 of the lockdown, including the lifting of the curfew, among others, once Cabinet gives the plans a green light. 

The president is also expected to announce a stimulus package for economic recovery.

Sources say the National Coronavirus Command Council has deliberated restricting international tourism but allowing movement through permission.

According to the recommendation Cabinet will decide on, people will be allowed to enter and exit the country with strict visa requirements.

READ | Local and international calls to reopen SA borders

This is to ensure that travellers from high-risk countries will be excluded from travel to South Africa.

As part of this plan, only three international airports will be open, subject to strict conditions, insiders say. 

Land borders will only be opened to those who have visas – in contrast to the usual free flow of travel between SADC countries

Holders of Zimbabwean Special Dispensation and Lesotho Special Dispensation permits will be allowed to travel easily. 

Two insiders privy to the deliberations said the Natjoints raised concerns about a second wave of the virus due to possible imported cases.

As a result, the country will not be open for all tourists.

The list of countries that will be restricted from travelling to South Africa is expected to be finalised on Wednesday. 

It has also been recommended that state-sponsored quarantine should be done away with and that international travellers should carry their own costs.

It is understood that foreign nationals who have work visas will be allowed to enter, as well as family members of people who have work visas and South Africans who are abroad and want to come home.

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