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EU to discuss co-ordinated response to China COVID situation



Today (4 January), European Union health officials will meet to discuss a coordinated response to the rising incidence of COVID-19 in China. The Swedish EU presidency announced this Monday (2 January).

It took place at a similar meeting on 29 December, attended by more than 100 representatives from EU governments and EU health agency. It asked the EU to adopt it and test Chinese travelers for COVID. Beijing will lift travel restrictions beginning 8 January.

Other EU-27 countries stated that they don’t think it’s necessary despite China’s decision to relax its pandemic restrictions in response to an increase in new infections.

According to a spokesperson for Sweden’s presidency, there is a meeting of the Integrated Political Crisis Response. The meeting will give an update on COVID-19 and discuss the possibility for EU actions to be coordinated.

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Stella Kyriakides, Health Commissioner, stated in a 29-December letter to EU governments that genomic sequencing should be increased for COVID-19 infection. She also recommended that airport waste water monitoring be improved to detect new variants. This was done in response to an increase in Chinese infections.

Kyriakides said that the bloc should “very alert” as there was insufficient data regarding China’s testing and epidemiology. He advised EU health ministers that they should evaluate their current practices in genomic sequencing of coronaviruses as “an urgent step”.

The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDPC) stated last week that it did not recommend any Chinese tourist measures.


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The EU stated that variants from China were already present in the Union. EU citizens had high vaccination rates, and there was a lower risk of import infection than people who were infected daily in the EU. The situation is currently being managed by the health-care system.

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