Ottawa: Canada is extending a ban on non-essential travel with the United States until July 21 and will soon reveal how existing COVID-19 restrictions will be relaxed, Public Safety Minister Bill Blair said on Friday.
Canada's Liberal government is under increasing pressure from businesses and the tourism industry to ease the ban, which was first imposed in March 2020 to help contain spread of the coronavirus and has been renewed on a monthly basis ever since.
"In coordination with the US, we are extending restrictions on non-essential international travel and with the United States until July 21st, 2021," Blair said on Twitter.
Ottawa will reveal on June 21 how it plans to start lifting the measures for fully vaccinated Canadians and others who are currently permitted to enter Canada, he added.
Health Minister Patty Hajdu last week said the government was preparing to lift quarantine protocols for citizens who had received their second dose of a vaccine.
The US administration has created working groups with both Mexico and Canada to discuss the restrictions. The groups held their initial meetings this week, sources told Reuters.