As we anticipated on Monday, the dynamics of the pandemic took a new form after the escalation of the new strain of COVID-19 in British territory, which motivated changes in the border policy of the Argentine government.
And finally this afternoon it was officially announced that as of 0:00 on December 25, only the entry and exit of Argentine nationals and residents will be allowed through the Ezeiza International Airport and the San Fernando Airport, under the condition of presenting a negative PCR test taken within 72 hours before the flight and the obligation to keep isolation for seven days (the test can also be carried out upon arrival in Ezeiza).
Foreigners with direct relatives in Argentina are also included (or at least that can be interpreted from the statement issued by the Ministry of the Interior), since it only specifies that the entry of tourists from neighboring countries is suspended, the only foreigners who could enter without higher requirements. We will have to wait for the norm to be published, although, given the sloppy handling of the national authorities in these matters, it would not be strange that they have «forgotten» some detail.
And if we talk about untidiness, the official statement also mentions that flights to and from Italy, the Netherlands, Denmark and Australia will be suspended, when there are no regular flights to Argentina from these last two countries. It is also expected that the norm will include in the restrictions flights originating from those countries, even though they arrive on flights from other countries. Flight restrictions with Great Britain will remain.
The release also specifies the following exceptions:
- Diplomats, officials, and essential personnel from authorized destinations must have authorization from the DNM (Dirección Nacional de Migraciones), and present a negative PCR test and COVID insurance.
- International transport personnel and crews are exempt from the requirements, under the application of specific health protocols, in the exclusive exercise of their activity.
- Athletes framed in specific protocols for sporting events, with prior authorization from the DNM and Sanitara authority, their activity will be supervised by the Ministry of Tourism and Sports.
- In principle, all this will be valid until January 8, 2021, but it will depend on how the epidemiological situation evolves both in Argentina and in the region. An extension would not be rare in this country as in others.