US, Canada preparing to unveil border restrictions: reports
The United States and Canada are working on a plan to bar nonessential travel between the two countries, according to multiple reports late Tuesday.
A Canadian government official told The Associated Press that the two countries were working out the details of the new restrictions ahead of an expected announcement.
The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) reported that the plan could be announced as early as Wednesday.
The deal would allow some commercial traffic and let Canadian citizens return home but would broadly close the U.S.-Canada border to tourists and shoppers, according to the CBC.
A Trump administration official told CNN that the new restrictions were aimed at ensuring that trade and business between the two countries continues.
The outlet noted that officials were still working on defining “nonessential travel.”
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau signaled Monday that Canada would close its border to most nonresidents as governments respond to the growing coronavirus crisis.
Trudeau said that only Canadian citizens and permanent residents would be permitted to enter the country, though some exceptions would be granted, such as for diplomats, air crews and immediate family members of citizens.
“As the virus continues its spread, we’ve decided to take increasingly aggressive steps to keep you and your family safe,” he said.
U.S. citizens were exempted from that move, Trudeau said, noting that “the level of integration of our two countries is quite particular.”
“We recognize that the level of integration of our two economies and the coordination that we’ve had over the past while puts the U.S. in a separate category from the rest of the world,” he said.
The Trump administration previously enacted a travel ban affecting dozens of countries in Europe as it seeks to contain the spread of coronavirus in the U.S.
As of Tuesday, the U.S. has more than 6,300 cases of the virus, while Canada had nearly 600, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.