Timo Aronkytö, Deputy Mayor of Vantaa, emphasizes that the control of passengers at the airport is currently seamless.
In the public debate, one has wondered why, unlike many other countries, those arriving in Finland are not required to have a corona test or a certificate of such before traveling. According to the authorities, however, “forced testing” is already working in practice at Helsinki-Vantaa Airport.
Last week, the Regional State Administrative Agency of Southern Finland issued a mass order to tighten the corona testing of immigrants at Finnish border sites in the region. 18-31 Pursuant to the regulation in force in March, the municipalities of the region must carry out health checks on passengers arriving at the ports of Helsinki, Helsinki-Vantaa Airport and the Vaalimaa border crossing point from countries with high interest rates.
Deputy Mayor of Vantaa Timo Aronkytö said To Ilta-Sanomat on Tuesday that health control at Helsinki-Vantaa Airport has been taken seriously.
– The border guard checks the papers, our health authority checks the certificates and registers the passenger’s details. You can’t slip from there, like you can’t cross the border, Aronkytö says.
In high-risk countries, the incidence of coronavirus has been higher than 25 infections per 100,000 people in the last two weeks. If a foreign passenger arriving from such a country refuses a corona test and does not present a negative result to a test carried out no more than 72 hours before entry, the border guard shall return him or her to the country of departure.
There is also no need to apply for the test if the passenger has already suffered from corona 6 months earlier.
A Finnish return passenger would face a quarantine order and a fine if he refused the test. However, Aronkydö has not yet become aware of any cases that refuse the test. About 80 per cent of passengers have already taken the test on the country of departure side and present appropriate evidence of their result to the health authority in the field.
– Finnair requires passengers to take a test, so operations are going well. Other airlines do not require it, but passengers know that operating in Finland is more flexible if the test is taken.
Aronkydön according to the control at the airport is currently seamless. About 120-200 tests are performed per day. The proportion of positive test results in all varies between 1 and 20 percent daily. Controls have also been facilitated by the decline in passenger numbers following the worsening pandemic.
According to Aronkydö, about 700–1,400 passengers arrive at Helsinki-Vantaa Airport from abroad every day.
– That’s about a tenth of what it used to be. Frankly, I hope that travel volumes will start to rise as the epidemic calms down during the spring and summer. That is everyone’s wish. Finnair’s plane must be blown up again.
In the current pandemic situation, you can travel to Finland from abroad only for a necessary and justified reason, such as studying or family reasons. Only the necessary commuting traffic from the Schengen area to Finland is allowed.
In recent weeks, border guards have returned some passengers who have arrived in Finland without a valid reason.
– We do not have a border open, but there must be a reason to come to the country, Arankytö emphasizes.
Manager Jari Keinänen The Ministry of Social Affairs and Health said on Wednesday that before March, regional government agencies were hesitant about their authority to impose forced tests on Finnish border crossings. A new law clarifying powers will enter into force in April this year.
Keinänen cannot say whether the ambiguity related to the current legislation slowed down the imposition of compulsory tests at Finnish border crossings.
– It is difficult to assess whether those decisions would have been made even if the interpretation of the law had been clear, Keinänen says.
The Southern Finland Avi March Order on Compulsory Health Check-up does not apply to children born after 2008, freight transport and logistics personnel at work or Helsinki-Vantaa Airport transit passengers.
Source site www.is.fi