The French authorities are expected to impose a quarantine on arrivals from the UK in a tit-for-tat move after the UK government announced on Friday that it will be applying a 14-day quarantine on all passengers arriving in the UK, with a limited range of exceptions. The UK quarantine will apply to train and ferry passengers as well as those arriving by air.

The UK rule will come into effect on June 8, and has been fiercely criticised by UK airlines and airport operators, who have warned of the threat not only to passenger travel but to UK freight exports that rely on scheduled flights. One critic said the UK move was “too much, too late.”

The French ministry of the interior said late on Friday: “We take note of the decision of the British government and we regret it.” The ministry added that France is ready to put a reciprocal measure in place once the UK policy takes effect.

Two weeks ago the UK’s prime minister said, following a telephone conversation with President Macron, that travellers from France would be exempt from any quarantine restrictions.

The UK now has the highest coronavirus death rate in Europe and infections and daily deaths are falling at a slower rate than across the Channel.

PHOTO: French Minister of Interior Christophe Castaner