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The Global Business Travel Association is stressing the importance of cooperation among the European Union, Canada and the United States in restoring safe travel and rebooting the economy as a result. The organization has called on the European Commission and federal governments on both sides of the Atlantic to pursue talks to find a resolution for transatlantic travel and border-crossing — based on reciprocity, proportionality and scientific guidance.
"GBTA has repeatedly called on these governments to adopt a coordinated approach in responding to COVID-19 and the evolving situation," said GBTA interim executive director Dave Hilfman. "As a select number of countries recently chose to reinstate travel restrictions, we would like to stress the importance of closely following the recommendations of the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Public Health Agency of Canada and the World Health Organization to ensure consistency and restore consumer confidence in air travel."
Hilfman, who recently stepped in as interim leader of the association following the resignation of Scott Solombrino, brings with him decades of experience as an senior airline executive.
"We encourage open conversations to continue, as well as appropriate communication to the general public," added Hilfman. "Maintaining transatlantic ties is in the best interest of citizens and the economies of the for all."
Collaboration is essential to the development of common safety protocols as well, noted Mark Cuschieri, global head of travel at UBS and chair of GBTA's European Advisory Board. "Contact-tracing applications can effectively help fight the pandemic but can only do so if they are subject to a common set of standards, to enable rapid exchange of information and limit the risks of further outbreaks," he pointed out.