The US economy is losing around $ 198 million a day due to current entry restrictions that have been in place for more than 16 months now for several countries around the world, including here the 25 countries of the Schengen area, the United Kingdom and Ireland.
In order to protect the health of citizens amid the coronavirus outbreak, the US State Department introduced four proclamations in a matter of months in 2020, which temporarily suspended entry for all people who have visited any of the countries. from the Schengen zone, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Brazil, and South Africa, during the 14 days before the trip to the YS, after the American authorities felt that these territories had been strongly affected by the Coronavirus, reports SchengenVisaInfo.com.
Even though governments of European countries have often urged the US government to abolish the ban on European countries, such a step has yet to be taken.
Unlike 2019 levels, at present the United States has banned entry to more than half of its top 20 markets in the world in terms of inbound spending, resulting in a sharp drop in the US travel and tourism industry last year.
These figures were revealed by the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) in its recent report focusing on inbound international travel spending. The report pointed out that the United States continues to close its doors to countries that made a significant contribution to the U.S. economy in visitor spending in 2019, before the spread of the coronavirus, including:
- the United Kingdom (8%)
- Germany (4%)
- France (3%)
- Italy (2%)
According to the WTTC, the successful deployment of vaccines in countries such as Germany (62 percent fully vaccinated), France (62 percent fully vaccinated and Italy (63 percent) has led to an easing of restrictions on trip.
Still, the WTTC stressed that while some countries have tightened restrictions on unvaccinated travelers from the United States, the latter should open their borders in order to give the travel and tourism industry a much-needed boost.
Many European countries have stepped up their measures to prevent arrivals from the United States after a recommendation from the EU Council to take such a step, and some have even banned all non-essential travel for US citizens. United, as the latter has suffered an increase in the number of COVID-19 infections, especially of the Delta and Mu variants.
The WTTC report clarified that the United States could lose its position as the world’s largest market in terms of the travel and tourism sector if American authorities do not remove restrictions imposed to stop the spread of the virus.
More than 16.5 million jobs in the United States were supported by the travel and tourism industry, or 10.5 of total employment in the United States, in 2019, according to the report. In addition, business travel accounted for $ 358 billion in 2019, or 30% of total spending.
“The US economy and global ranking in contribution to GDP are threatened every day that US borders remain closed to travelers. In addition, the US economy stands to lose hundreds of millions by remaining closed to major source markets such as the UK and the EU ”, WTTC President and CEO Julia Simpson emphasized in this regard.
The recent WTTC report also found that the US contribution to the travel and tourism sector declined by $ 1.1 trillion last year; therefore, the Council urged the Biden administration “define a clear roadmap for reopening to international travel. “