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UK reacts to India’s reciprocal step, says engage with India on vaccine certification

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A British High Commission spokesman said Britain was ready to visit. (file)

New Delhi:

The UK said on Friday that it is continuing to collaborate with other countries around the world to expand recognition of COVID vaccine certification in a phased manner.

Sources said the statement comes after India’s decision to impose reciprocal measures on British nationals, whereby UK nationals arriving in the country from the UK after their arrival at home or at their destination address for 10 days from mandatory quarantine. Gotta pass.

“The UK continues to work to expand the policy in a phased approach to countries and regions around the world. We are working with the Indian government on technical cooperation to expand UK recognition of vaccine certification to those vaccinated by the relevant public. We are continuing to engage with the health body in India,” a British High Commission spokesperson said in a statement.

The spokesperson said the UK is open to travel and they are seeing a lot of people moving from India to the UK, be it tourists, businessmen or students. “Over 62,500 student visas have been issued in the year ending June 2021, an increase of about 30% over the previous year. We want to make the travel process as easy as possible.”

The move comes days after the United Kingdom announced new travel rules that said Indian travelers, even those who have received both doses of the Kovidshield vaccine, will be treated as unvaccinated.

Sources said the reciprocity would come into effect from 4 October, the same day the new UK travel rules would come into force. “The new rules will come into effect from October 4 and will apply to all UK nationals arriving from the UK,” a source said.

Sources said that from October 4, all UK nationals coming to India from the UK, irrespective of their immunization status, will have to undergo pre-departure COVID-19 RT-PCR test within 72 hours of travel, RT-PCR test on arrival Will have to do Airport and RT-PCR test 8 days after arrival.

“UK nationals coming to India from the UK will have to undergo mandatory quarantine at home or at the destination address for 10 days after arrival,” the source said.

Sources said that officials of the Ministry of Health and Civil Aviation will take steps to implement the new measures.

India said last month that AstraZeneca would be within its rights to take reciprocal measures against the UK’s “discriminatory” move to recognize a COVID-19 vaccine, but not Covishield if the problem was not resolved satisfactorily.

Even though new British regulations state that AstraZeneca Covishield is among the vaccines that qualify as approved, India is not yet on the list of 17 countries mentioned. ‘Changes in international travel regulations’ state that formulations of the four listed vaccines, namely AstraZeneca Covishield, AstraZeneca Vaxjeveria and Moderna Takeda, qualify as approved vaccines.

(Except for the title, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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