Blok and Knops: Curaçao has not asked to keep the code yellow

WILLEMSTAD - The government of Curaçao has not recently urged the Dutch cabinet to keep the travel advice code yellow, while code orange might be more appropriate for this. This was announced by the Kingdom Minister of Foreign Affairs Stef Blok and the Undersecretary of Kingdom Relations Raymond Knops prior to the weekly cabinet meeting that was held last Friday.

"When assessing travel advice, we base ourselves purely on RIVM (the Dutch National Institute for Public Health and the Environment)," says Blok. Economic interests have also partly taken into account, says Knops, but according to him, "just as in the Netherlands" they are always included in the bigger picture. The islands are highly dependent on tourism. In any case, this did not weigh more heavily than the health interests, according to the Undersecretary.

Curaçao minister plenipotentiary Anthony Begina said two weeks ago that code yellow was good for the island and that he had advocated it. At that time, the number of infections was much lower and the situation was therefore different, says Knops.

A few weeks ago, Prime Minister Mark Rutte said during a press conference about corona that people from the Netherlands can still go on holiday to Curaçao, because of code yellow. Travel companies were then inundated with bookings.

The number of infections on the island is now rising again. On Sunday, 106 infections were registered. Records were broken the days before, on Thursday last week 119 infections.

Health care is fragile here, just like in Aruba and St. Maarten. People traveling to the islands must have had a negative corona test for this. If not, they should be quarantined.

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