Jul 5, 2021 - Health

Canada begins easing U.S. border pandemic restrictions

A duty free store at the Canada-U.S. border in Saint-Bernard-de-Lacolle, Quebec, Canada, on Wednesday, Sept. 16, 2020.

A duty free store in Saint-Bernard-de-Lacolle, Quebec, Canada, at the border with the U.S. Photog: Christinne Muschi/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced Monday the gradual easing of pandemic restrictions at the Canada-U.S. border.

Driving the news: Trudeau told a news conference this would begin Monday with the lifting of a 14-day quarantine requirement for Canadian residents fully vaccinated against COVID-19. The measure has been in place since March last year.

  • These residents will also no longer be required to stay in a government-approved hotel for their first three days back in Canada.

Yes, but: The easing of the rules does not apply to fully vaccinated U.S. residents as Trudeau wants to keep the border shut until at least 75% of Canadians are fully vaccinated.

What he's saying: "We're very hopeful that we're going to see new steps on reopening announced in the coming weeks," Trudeau said at the news conference in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario.

  • "We're going to make sure that we're not seeing a resurgence of COVID-19 cases because nobody wants to go back to further restrictions, after having done so much and sacrificed so much to get to this point."

By the numbers: Nearly 67% of Canada's population has had at least one coronavirus vaccine dose, official figures show.

  • Just over 27% have been fully vaccinated against the virus.

What to watch: Canada's restrictions barring nonessential travel with the U.S. will remain in place until at least July 21.

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