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Press Releases
29 November 2021

Statement regarding travel restrictions in response to Omicron COVID-19 variant

ACI World calls upon governments to implement pragmatic and risk-based measures based on science

Montreal, 29 November 2021 – In response to flight and travel restrictions by certain countries to/from southern African countries due to the B.1.1.529 variant of COVID-19, ACI World Director General Luis Felipe de Oliveira gave the following comments:

“While public health remains the utmost priority, we call upon governments to coordinate to implement pragmatic and risk-based measures based on science.

“Furthermore, we continue to urge countries to work closely with aviation stakeholders—including airports and airlines—prior to and during the implementation of travel measures to facilitate a more efficient application.

“This situation is another reminder of the urgent need for countries to adopt interoperable digital health credentials for testing and vaccination that are mutually recognized across borders. This will allow countries to better manage their travel measures and adapt to the evolving health situation.

“The entire aviation ecosystem needs to work together with governments to ensure a safe resumption of travel—one that can be sustained to enable the rebuilding of livelihoods, countries and economies. Coordination and collaboration will be key to achieving this. Full travel bans and border closures are not an ongoing solution as variants emerge.”


1. Stay up to date with COVID-19 developments on ACI World’s dedicated news hub.

2. Airports Council International (ACI), the trade association of the world’s airports, was founded in 1991 with the objective of fostering cooperation among its member airports and other partners in world aviation, including the International Civil Aviation Organization, the International Air Transport Association and the Civil Air Navigation Services Organization. In representing the best interests of airports during key phases of policy development, ACI makes a significant contribution toward ensuring a global air transport system that is safe, secure, customer-centric and environmentally sustainable. As of January 2021, ACI serves 701 members, operating 1933 airports in 183 countries.


Adam Zampini
ACI World  
Telephone: +1 514 373 1254