Malta’s hoteliers, through membership of the Malta Hotels and Restaurants Association (MHRA) are offering free accommodation to cover the €100 daily quarantine hotel fee for Ukrainian asylum seekers fleeing from their war-torn country.
Ukraine is classified as a dark red zone for travel by Malta’s health authorities, therefore travel is essentially banned and anyone coming from the country after gaining permission will be required to quarantine at a designated hotel, against a daily €100 fee, paid at their own cost.
On Tuesday, Government announced it would be dropping the travel ban in solidarity with Ukrainians fleeing home, after Russia invaded the neighbouring country last week.
Government however said it would not be waiving the mandatory 14-day quarantine period, and those with no address where they can self-isolate would be required to stay at one of Malta’s designated quarantine hotel, costing €1,400 euros in total.
Foreign Minister Evarist Bartolo had stepped in to say his ministry was in a position to cover such fees but did not provide further detail.
On Wednesday, the MHRA issued a statement to say that its members have offered free accommodation covering the quarantine period required by law for Ukrainian asylum seekers.
In this manner, the MHRA said, Malta will be able to fast track Ukrainian asylum seekers and be in line with quarantine requirements without burdening these refugees with quarantine costs. MHRA will also offer support to Ukrainian asylum seekers in finding jobs across the hospitality sector.
Ukraine is facing back-logged roads and packed trains as citizens attempt to flee from the Russian offensive.
MHRA President Tony Zahra said that, “We share the sorrow at the lives lost and the damage being caused in Ukraine. In the same way that Maltese hoteliers provided beds to emergency and frontline workers during the pandemic, the hospitality sector is now ready and willing to provide support and show solidarity with Ukrainian refugees.”
Mr Zahra further said that,” our initiative is a demonstration of solidarity and a clear message that peace should prevail as soon as possible for the real best interests of all humanity.”
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