16th May 2021 @ 9:14 am

Lanzarote has launched an innovative new project aimed at making the island “the first safe tourist destination in the world”.

The project, titled Lanzarote Covid Safe, will be undertaken in collaboration with King’s College London, INM, Alastria and Continuam.   The aim of the project is to test a model of tourism that guarantees the health of tourists and locals, using Covid protocols that are effective, non-intrusive and simple.

Key to these protocols will be a saliva-based PCR test developed by Kings College London, called PCR-Queen. Rocío Martínez, researcher at the College, said “In highly mobile environments, such as a university or a tourist destination, we have been able to verify that the biosafety and rapid detection aspects of the PCR-Queen test offer maximum reliability. Furthermore, as it is not intrusive, it can be carried out easily and regularly, making it ideal for both tourists and industry personnel”.

Blockchain technology will also be used to create permanently updated digital certificates, available on smartphones or online, that reflect the results of tests. This technology will be compatible with the forthcoming European Digital Certificate

At the launch of the project, at the Hotel Melia Salinas in Costa Teguise, Cabildo President Maria Dolores Corujo said ” I am convinced that Lanzarote will become, with this project, a reference point for a change of model in tourism, preparing us for a still-uncertain future. We cannot fall into the naivety of thinking that in a few months all our problems will be gone.”

Canarian President Ángel Victor Torres was also at the launch, and said afterwards that the Canaries could be taken off the UK’s amber list “imminently.” Torres claimed that he hoped to celebrate Canary Day on May 30th with the return of the British market. Nevertheless, Torres’s optimism has to be taken in conjunction with the warning of UK PM Boris Johnson, who warned on Thursday that the green list was likely to remain “tiny.”

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