Finland bans entry to non-essential travelers for one month

EFE.- Finland on Wednesday tightened strict travel restrictions by banning entry to all Schengen area travelers who do not undertake work deemed essential, a measure that will remain in effect until February 25.

The goal of the Finnish government is to further reduce cross-border traffic to prevent the spread of new variants of the SARS-CoV-2 virus, which causes the Covid-19 epidemic, of which more than a hundred infections have already been detected. in the Nordic countries.

So far, foreigners have been allowed in for work reasons, but from now on, only those who do “a work important to the operation of the company or in order to secure the supply” will be able to enter Finland, according to the executive in a permit.

These workers must present at the border control a form issued by their company justifying that the work they are coming to do is necessary and that it must be carried out without delay.

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The list of workers considered essential includes, among others, medical personnel, diplomats, foreign journalists, transport workers and employees of international organizations.

The new restrictions will not affect Finnish citizens or foreigners residing in Finland, who are recognized by the constitution with the right to enter and leave the country freely.

Close family members, foreign students, asylum seekers and members of various “special groups” arriving by invitation, including sports, cultural and business professionals, are also exempt.

The 30,000 Estonian workers who work in Finland, mainly in construction, who will not be able to go home on weekends for at least a month if they want to keep their jobs, will be most affected by the new restrictions.

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Likewise, residents of the border areas with Sweden and Norway, who have hitherto enjoyed a special status, will not be able to enter Finnish territory for work if they do not perform essential work.

Finland is currently the third European country with the lowest rate of Covid-19 infection, with 77.3 cases per 100,000 inhabitants in the past two weeks, after Iceland which has accumulated 23.5 cases, and Greece with 69.1 cases.

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