The Ministers of Transport and Finance appealed to the citizens to be vaccinated on Friday, with Giannis Karousos saying that the United Kingdom did not include us in the green list due to the low vaccination rates and Konstantinos Petridis emphasizing individual responsibility.
Mr. Karousos revealed that thoughts are being made about incentives and disincentives for vaccinated people and will be further discussed in the inter-ministerial committees.
In statements on the sidelines of the signing of a Loan Agreement of up to € 200 million with the EIB for the financing of Small and Medium Enterprises, YPOIK said that at this point in the pandemic it is inconceivable that we should not all show individual responsibility, adding that for a year and a half the state has show solidarity through the taxpayer's money and through the risks we went through for the economy.
He stressed that at the moment there are vaccines and it is the duty of all those who live in an organized state not to endanger their fellow human beings, not to risk making others unemployed, not to risk the collapse of the economy, because they refuse to be vaccinated.
“And it is not just a matter of campaigning or information, experts have been talking for a year and a half, the scientific community has been talking for a year and a half, it is inconceivable to see these rates of denial either by health professionals or by our fellow human beings. “vaccines,” he said.
The Finance Minister said that all of humanity has fought a battle with time to secure these vaccines so that we can have them as it was our only weapon to deal with a pandemic that comes every hundred years.
“Such individual irresponsibility cannot be accepted by some,” he said.
Asked if action should be taken, he said it might be something the government should see in the near future.
To another question how much more the Government will be able to support the sectors of the economy, he answered that it is not the Government, because the Government is the taxpayers' money which it has redistributed during this period to support those of our fellow human beings who may have lost their jobs. or go bankrupt. “Your money is not inexhaustible to give to maintain companies that can not stand, because some refuse to be vaccinated,” he said.
Mr. Petridis said that the only weapon we have and is effective in the Indian mutation is vaccines.
He said the tourism industry continues to be supported by support measures in both June and July “and we will see, but we can not take our eyes off ourselves”.
Giannis Karousos said that last month a good preparation was made with the Russian authorities and the United Kingdom to send a message that our epidemiological data were excellent and to persuade them to include Cyprus as a green country to restore the flights and all the benefits that this rehabilitation would have, especially the economic and tourism benefits.
“Unfortunately, with the cases of the last few days, we see that this effort is difficult, the UK did not include Cyprus in the green list and the reason is very simple, vaccinations are not progressing, people are not vaccinated, especially young people, and this creates a problem for us. “countries like the United Kingdom and Russia are greening us, especially for chartered flights,” he said.
He appealed to the tourism industry “if we want to open, for the tourism industry to function, time is not lost yet, the citizens must be vaccinated”.
He stressed that there is no other solution and noted that when we talk to the UK authorities and they tell us that their main criterion is the percentage of vaccinated population and we see that in the tourism industry and tourist areas there are low vaccination rates “this is unjustified ».
“All actors in the tourism industry must take action, whether they are hoteliers, leisure centers, mayors of tourist cities and other bodies to persuade staff and young people and those active in this industry to be vaccinated, to increase them. “Vaccine rates, so that we can communicate again in a positive way, especially in the UK, to make a resumption of flights. Vaccination is the only way to open up tourism and there is no other way,” said Mr Karousos. .
Asked if the vaccine could be made mandatory for the tourism industry, he said he did not know if it could be made mandatory “but we certainly need to find ways to increase vaccination rates, especially in tourist areas”.
“We have to investigate it and implement measures or even disincentives to those who are not vaccinated, it is inconceivable to me, we are a tourist country, we depend significantly on tourism, we are ready to open many countries, our country was already improving epidemiologically, “At the ECDC we were in orange and if we continued we would soon be green, but based on the latest data I think it will be very difficult for us to get green or to improve our situation for the countries abroad,” he said.
He also stressed that the tourist season has not been lost yet, but we manage to take action collectively.
Asked if the discussion of incentives and disincentives started, he said that it is something that the new Minister of Health will see, adding that at the airports the vaccinated person has no restrictions and this also applies to the digital certificate. “And we have taken the initiative and will discuss them in the relevant inter-ministerial committees,” he said.
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