Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Kuwait Travel and Tourism Agencies Association (KTTAA) Mohammad AlMutairi spoke against the decision to ban nationals of 31 countries from entering Kuwait, saying that it was unjustified and came as a surprise and was done without prior notice, reports Aljarida daily.

Noting that the decision was not studied, he added that it was inconsistent with regard to the size of Kuwait on the international scene. Al-Mutairi stressed, “The cancellation of flights and disruption of passengers’ interests in this manner did not happen in any other country around the world during the COVID-19 crisis”.

He expressed dislike with the timings of its issuance, saying that it came at such a critical time and on the morning of the day of flight resumption without notifying the passengers in advance, even though the date for opening the airport commercially was known for more than a month and a half ago”,

Highlighting the plight of expats who are suffering from the ban, Al-Mutairi asked, “How will those who had cancelled their residencies, handed over their apartments, and sold their cars be compensated, let alone for the cancellation of their tickets?”

The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) announced Sunday that non-Kuwaiti passengers from 31 countries were not allowed to enter the country whether flying directly or via transit from other countries.

Expat passengers would be allowed to fly to Kuwait if they stayed in countries not on the list for at least 14 days. After 14 days, they must conduct a PCR test for (COVID­19) virus and provide an approval certificate proving a negative result and not being affected with the coronavirus, the DGCA said in a press statement.

It noted that the validity of such certificate should not exceed 72 hours between the test date and arriving date to Kuwait.

The directorate pointed out that the move was taken on instructions by the health authorities due to the situation and repercussions caused by the spread of the coronavirus regarding ‘high­-risk’ countries.

The list of those countries banned from entering Kuwait includes India, Iran, China, Brazil, Columbia, Armenia, Bangladesh, the Philippines, Syria, Spain, Singapore, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Iraq, Mexico, Indonesia, Chile, Pakistan, Egypt, Lebanon, Hong Kong, Italy, North Macedonia, Moldova, Panama, Peru, Serbia, Montenegro, Dominican Republic and Kosovo.