Nigeria could be added to UK travel red list says Sky News
Nigeria, Jamaica and Grenada are among the countries that could be moved to the UK travel red list today, according to a data expert.
It means anyone coming from Nigeria to the UK must quarantine in a government-mandated hotel for two weeks at his or her expense before being allowed to join family or friend.
The British government is set to update its COVID-19 travel list as part of a review that happens every three weeks.
Countries and territories are listed as red, amber or green – with different rules for each of the three lists.
Sky News has spoken to data expert Tim White to find out which countries could be affected.
Jamaica and Grenada, which are popular destinations for tourists in the Caribbean, could be added to the red list, according to Mr White.
In Africa, the data suggests Nigeria could be vulnerable, he said.
Nigeria and Jamaica stayed amber in the previous review, but within hours the Foreign Office issued guidance saying it “advises against all but essential travel to the whole of Jamaica based on the current assessment of COVID-19 risks”.
In the last few days, there has been a big spike in the number of people arriving from Jamaica with COVID-19.
Mr White said the transport secretary “would effectively be admitting a mistake three weeks ago” if he put Jamaica on the red list – and might not do so for that reason.
Grenada could become the first country to go directly from green to red because of an “astonishing” spread of COVID-19 on the small Caribbean island, he said.
About 1,000 people per 100,000 are testing positive for COVID-19 each week, which Mr White said is “well into the danger zone”.
He thinks a few other small islands in the Americas could be added to the red list, but the only concerns in Europe this time are in the Balkans.
“Albania had one of the highest rates of infected arrivals in the most recent NHS results, but rates there seem low enough to keep it amber,” he said.
“Serbia has the strongest sustained COVID-19 growth in Europe right now, but levels are still below Montenegro when I warned it may go red three weeks ago.”
“Serbia’s vaccination rate is also better, so I think it avoids red too.
“Kosovo should already be red, but its fate could be linked with Serbia and seems set to survive again.”
Further afield, Iran and Iraq may yet again stay amber – though Mr White believes the fact they have remained so is a “mystery”.
He said St Lucia is at risk because infection rates increased after the last travel review – but they are now declining and the case numbers are low overall, leading him to suspect that the country will be spared.
The Maldives are most likely to be taken off the red list and moved to amber, according to Mr White.