Alberta Premier Jason Kenney says he will advocate for the reopening of Canada’s border the next time provincial leaders have a conversation with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
Speaking at the Calgary Stampede, Kenney says he raised the issue with Trudeau while he was visiting the city last week.
The premier says he wants to see border rules relaxed to allow foreign nationals who can prove they are fully vaccinated to be allowed into the country without having to quarantine.
Canada recently got rid of its 14-day quarantine rule for returning citizens and permanent residents who can show they are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and tested negative.
The border remains shut to tourists and residents from other countries travelling for non-essential purposes.
The Canada-U.S. border is closed to non-essential travel until at least July 21, and Trudeau hasn’t said whether that would be extended for another month.
Trudeau has said he knows people are impatient to see travel resume, but the country can’t risk undoing its progress on fighting COVID-19 by opening up before enough people are vaccinated.
The federal government says until 75 per cent of Canada’s population is fully vaccinated, border measures are the best way to stop the arrival of new variants of the virus that causes COVID-19.
“We have 800,000 Canadians who work in the travel and tourism industries. We need to get them back to work,” Kenney said on Monday.
— With files from Bill Graveland in Calgary.
The Canadian Press