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Published on Thursday, May 27, 2021

Malta claims to be first 'herd immunity' EU nation






Holiday island Malta claims it has reached 'herd immunity' in its vaccination drive.


Malta's Health Minister said 70% of the approximately 500,000 population has received a Covid jab.


However, that relates to one dose with only 42% fully vaccinated so far.


It has been administering the Pfizer, Moderna and AstraZeneca vaccines, as well as the Johnson & Johnson vaccine which only requires a single shot.


"Today we have reached herd immunity. The vaccine is our weapon against the virus. It means that the virus' transmission -- even if the virus is still among us -- has decreased significantly," said Health Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Chris Fearne.


Malta starts reopening for tourism next week and adopts a green, amber, and red toer system similar to the UK.


The UK is in the amber tier and from 1 June, proof of a negative PCR test is not required for fully vaccinated travellers.


Non-vaccinated visitors must show a negative 72-hour PCR test.


It is hopeful of making the UK's 'green list' during the next update in early June.


From 1 June, the wearing of masks at pools and beaches will no longer be required by law although it is still recommended.


Then, a month later, masks will no longer be required in all outdoor settings.


The Tourism Board of Malta recently announced it would offer cash incentives for foreign visitors to book stays with up to €100 per person offered as a cash voucher to redeem for hotel services such as restaurants and spa treatments.


 

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