For more than a year now, the UAE — like much of the world — has had to restrict the movement of visitors to and from this country, public health measures that were necessary to protect us from the worst effects of coronavirus and its uncontrolled spread and mutations.
The move did impact lives with some inconveniences but the measures worked, allowing authorities and public health officials to ensure our safety from the virus and its variants.
Over the past weeks, a series of localised restrictions have been gradually eased and the phased approach has provided data that added to the pool of public health knowledge, meaning our safety and protection was paramount in the process.
The lifting on foreign travel to most destinations and the reopening of our international borders is a welcome development. Most restrictions and checks on entering Abu Dhabi have been removed too.
Exciting time for the UAE
This is a very exciting time for the UAE as the calendar ticks off the days to mark the 50th anniversary of the foundation of the state, an occasion when the homeland can showcase the best it has to offer on the international stage. And yes, throughout the pandemic and all of the challenges it brought, work has been continuing on the huge Expo site.
Planning and work has been under way for Expo 2020 Dubai and, with the lifting of travel restrictions, we can again welcome the world to the UAE and show it what the future holds in technological advancements and possibilities.
We have all been waiting for the worst of this pandemic to be behind us. Now, that day is here, and we are free to travel once more — but cautious too that other nations will have their own restrictions and regulations in place.
Throughout, governments and public health officials have always believed that the advances offered by vaccines would provide the best way forward while restrictions and limits allowed them to gain control over the initial spread of Covid 19.
That has certainly proved to be the case and now, with more than 80 per cent of the UAE population fully vaccinated, the lifting of travel restrictions can be implemented now.
All of us in the UAE have come through this together. We have all followed the advice that kept us safe, making personal and fiscal sacrifices for the greater good of all. Now, there is indeed an end in sight.