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Wednesday 6 December 2023 Dublin: 8°C
Sam Boal File image of a Ryanair plane.

From Monday there will be no countries on Ireland's Green List

There were just four countries left on the list last week.

THERE WILL BE no countries on Ireland’s Green List from next Monday after a review on the basis of data from the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC). 

The Department of Foreign Affairs confirmed the news this afternoon, saying Ireland “continues to work with EU partners to finalise negotiations on coordinating travel within the Union”. 

Last Thursday, there were just four countries left on the list - Cyprus, Finland, Latvia and Liechtenstein. 

People who travel from countries on the Green List are not required to restrict their movements after entering Ireland.

The government agreed to update the Green List on a weekly basis from the middle of September.

However, it is likely the list will be dropped in the coming months as the EU looks to introduce an EU-wide traffic light system for travel around Europe.

This policy is to be agreed upon by the EU Council of Ministers on 13 October. It would mark countries as green, orange or red depending on their rate of Covid-19 cases. 

Transport Minister Eamon Ryan yesterday said the current travel Green List is “not working” but that it could take time for the EU-wide travel policy to be implemented. 

 “The  current Green List is not working because just about every country we are connected to is outside the parameters of what would apply,” he said at the Oireachtas Committee on Transport. 

“Even the much higher parameters that we applied on 8 September, which were a multiple of what were applied early in July are no longer valid. So it is not working and we do have to change our approach.”

It is envisaged that the traffic light plan would use two metrics to judge whether people can travel to a specific county, 14-day incidence rates per 100,000 people and test positivity rates. 

As per the proposals, an EU country would only fail to make the EU’s safe travel list if a country’s incidence rate was both above 50 per 100,000 and the positivity rate was above 3%. 

Additional reporting by Rónán Duffy

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