France is reportedly on the cusp of being moved to the travel “red list” amid growing fears over the prevalence of the so-called South African variant of Covid-19.
Ministers discussed taking the measure during Wednesday’s review of the travel list system, the Telegraph reported.
Officials have been asked to “interrogate” the data coming out of the UK’s nearest European neighbour due to concerns that the South African, or beta, variant, could become resurgent in the UK.
The beta variant is believed to be more resistant to vaccines than other strains of the disease.
If it were to be moved to the “red list”, all arrivals from France would be required to quarantine in a hotel for 10 days upon arrival in the UK.
Any such move could have a disruptive effect on trade and supply chains between the UK and France.
Sources told the Telegraph that the issue could be discussed at a meeting of the Covid-O Cabinet sub-committee as early as Monday.
The government said that a decision was not expected “imminently”, with officials needing time to analyse the data in more detail.
The latest travel update saw Majorca, Menorca, and Ibiza added back onto the “amber list”, just two weeks after they joined the “green list”.