"Canadians have — throughout the pandemic — been able to fly down to the States for tourism, for secondary residences, for whatever reasons they wanted." 🇨🇦
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has responded to questions about the Canada-U.S. land border and why fully vaccinated Canadians have not yet been given the go-ahead to visit the States.
On July 20 — a day after Canada announced it would welcome back non-essential visitors from America in August — Trudeau spoke about why a reciprocal reopening of the U.S. border has not been announced.
"I will remind you that vaccinated or unvaccinated Canadians have been allowed to go down to Florida over the entire course of this pandemic," he told reporters on Tuesday.
"The Americans have always had an asymmetrical arrangement with us where [...] Canadians have — throughout the pandemic — been able to fly down to the States for tourism, for secondary residences, for whatever reasons they wanted," he said.
The prime minister added that this hasn't prevented the two countries from working "very, very closely" together and said every country has the right to set its own rules about how it will keep its citizens safe.
Later, Trudeau was asked by a reporter if Canadians "deserve more transparency from the U.S." when it comes to reciprocating looser travel restrictions at the land border.
"Every country should and does set its own border policies," he said.
"Our countries took different approaches, certainly at the beginning of the pandemic," he said, noting that Canada has had pretty strict travel restrictions since March 2020.
He concluded, "Canada is not going to any more dictate what the U.S. should be doing around its border policy, than we would accept the U.S. to dictate us around our border policy."
His comments come just one day after the Canadian federal government announced plans to begin resuming international travel in Canada.
This includes welcoming back fully vaccinated Americans from August 9 and fully vaccinated tourists from the rest of the world from September 7.