Entry restrictions on travel from China to be lifted, but Government continues to monitor developments
At a press conference on 16 February, Minister for Social Affairs and Public Health Jakob Forssmed announced that the temporary entry restrictions on travel from China will be lifted. The restrictions meant that travellers from China were required to present a negative COVID-19 test result. The temporary entry restrictions will cease to apply on 18 February 2023.
The temporary entry restrictions came into effect following a Government decision on 7 January and were extended on 28 January to apply until 18 February. These restrictions were designed to limit the spread of COVID-19 and, by extension, prevent the health care services in Sweden and other EU countries from coming under great pressure in light of the increase in cases in China. The entry restrictions were in line with the agreement reached by the EU Member States at an Integrated Political Crisis Response (IPCR) meeting.
On 16 February, Sweden, in its capacity as holder of the Presidency of the Council of the European Union, chaired an IPCR meeting at which it was agreed that the entry restrictions will be phased out in February.
The Government continues to monitor the COVID-19 pandemic
The Government is closely monitoring developments in the COVID-19 pandemic and has ongoing measures in place to curb the spread of the virus, protect people’s lives and health and protect the health care services.
In December 2022, the Government tasked the Public Health Agency of Sweden with monitoring and studying COVID-19. This comprehensive task involves closely monitoring the spread of the virus, alerting the public where the situation requires and proposing measures. The Public Health Agency of Sweden has also been tasked with testing wastewater at Stockholm Arlanda Airport so as to quickly detect variants of the virus previously not found in Sweden.
The Government intends to also task the Public Health Agency of Sweden with drawing up a proposal for a system for randomly testing where necessary passengers at airports, for example, to detect new infections or variants of existing diseases.