The Minister of Health, Alain Berset, also announced the adoption of new restrictions to try to contain the increase in infections, adding that the mandatory use of masks and presentation of the vaccination certificate will be extended.

The announcement, made today at a press conference, aims to “save” the winter season, crucial for the Swiss tourism industry, which is closely linked to the hotel, catering and ski sector.

The country has also decided to prohibit the entry of unvaccinated people travelling from a country or region of the Schengen area considered “at risk” by the Swiss authorities, with the exception of around 340,000 people from neighbouring countries (Germany, France, Italy, Liechtenstein ) who work in Switzerland every day.

The Federal Council wants to “prevent as much as possible, the importation of the Omicron variant of Covid-19, which has already been detected in the country.

“All [other] people who enter the territory, including those vaccinated and those who have had the disease and have recovered, must be tested”, according to the new rules, which come into force on December 4.

In addition to a PCR test done before entering the country, people will have to take a second test, PCR or antigen, between the fourth and seventh day after their arrival.

“This second test aims to ensure detection of people who have been infected even before departing or while travelling,” explained Berset.