Eamon Ryan says people travelling from UK to Ireland will face longer isolation periods
"This is to stay safe. To delay, not stop, the reuniting of families."
Minister for Transport Eamon Ryan has said that people travelling from the UK to Ireland will face longer isolation periods when they arrive in the country.
Ryan said on Tuesday that Cabinet will be bringing in new measures which will include longer isolation periods and the need for two negative PCR tests.
The Government will be introducing the measures in an attempt to help halt the spread of the highly transmissible Delta variant of Covid-19, which originated in India and has seen a huge increase in the UK recently.
Commenting on the measures, Ryan told RTE's Morning Ireland: "This is to stay safe. To delay, not stop, the reuniting of families.
"The Delta variant in the UK is a concern. I'm going into Cabinet after this and we're going to be discussing our approach to that.
"It's likely, subject to Cabinet agreeing, that we will also change our recommendation for people coming from the UK just for this period, because there is a concern about this variant.
"It will be a tightening, where, after being able to release yourself from quarantine after five days, we're going to make that 10 days, on the back of two PCR tests to show negative."
Ryan added that the more "we can delay its spread, the better protection we will have", saying that the prevention of the spread of the variant will come down to the success of Ireland's vaccine rollout.
"Domestically here, we are testing obviously... there's small numbers of the Delta variant but it is in the country, more on the eastern half than the west," he said.
"The more we can delay its spread, the better protection we will have... the uptake in vaccines here has been incredible and that will protect us."
Ryan added that the cautious approach will hopefully allow for more freedom in terms of travel when it reopens on 19 July.