Tunisia has announced the opening of all its borders by June 27, 2020, becoming the first country to do so.
That will sound like the end of a period of lockdown which will have lasted almost 4 months.
The total lifting of restrictions on inter-city travel is an indispensable corollary for the recovery, both local and international, of the tourism sector.
All this in a country where the Minister of Health, who is usually cassandre, finally declares that “Tunisia is almost coronavirus safe”.
That statement was corroborated by the SG of the World Tourism Organization.
“Tunisia’s success in its war against the coronavirus pandemic is an experience that sends comforting messages to the world that Tunisia is one of the safest countries in which to travel”.
The announcement was made at the beginning of the week by Secretary General of the World Tourism Organization Zurab Pololikashvili at a telephone conversation with the Tunisian Minister of Tourism.
The same week, Forbes named Tunisia on the short list of “7 countries [that] have the potential to become major tourist destinations in a post-COVID world. In this article in the prestigious magazine, its contributor Jared Ranahan wrote:
“many nations around the world are preparing for a boom in international visitors once travel is more feasible – for some countries, this could be their first opportunity to establish themselves as a prominent regional force for tourism. While the following countries have yet to become world-class destinations, the ingredients are all there (…), “Tunisia is shaping up to be the perfect destination for those wishing to experience the vibrant and unique culture of North Africa.”
Airports and Tunisair planes on standby
Tunis-Carthage airport is bringing itself up to international health standards.
The OACA, the terminal manager, has set up the measures now in force in order to avoid any risk of infection by COVID-19. Visit in public and sub-customs zones, as our colleague “destination Tunisia” noted.
In spite of the last serious statements by the Minister of Transport that are far from being shared by the Prime Minister and especially by the trade unions of the company.
The latter would prepare a strong protest under the windows of Anouar Maarouf in Montplaisir, according to our sources, and even less by the SG of the UGTT who would have made it clear to him during a recent cabinet meeting where was present, Tunisair is preparing for June 27.
This date should, in principle, also mark the return to work of Tunisian airline Tunisair.
“Once the lockdown is over, the company will gradually resume all its scheduled flights to almost all destinations.
We will be almost 70% operational,” CEO Elyes Mnakbi said in a brief statement to Africanmanager.
Mnakbi also told us that the progressive nature of the resumption will also apply to the number of flights per destination, which will rise to a crescendo.
Asked about the health safety standards that Tunisair will then have to respect, its CEO told us that “we are waiting for the international standards that will be decreed in this regard by international aviation bodies such as IATA, which should determine how many passengers air carriers will be allowed to accept.
What we are currently being asked and will do is to sterilize our aircraft before and after each flight and to provide all our staff with the necessary health safety equipment”.