At least 7.2 billion people live in countries with travel restrictions as the novel coronavirus pandemic spreads, according to a new analysis by the Pew Research Center.
That’s 93% of the world’s population, Pew said, as most nations have imposed partial or complete border closures to foreign nationals.
“The movement of people across borders has come to a standstill in much of the world as countries close their borders to visitors – and sometimes their own citizens – in response to the coronavirus outbreak,” the analysis says.
The report, posted Wednesday on the center’s website, combines data from border closure announcements and United Nations population data. And a map from the Pew Research Center shows the sweeping array of restrictions around the globe.
Last month the International Organization for Migration reported that 174 countries, territories and areas around the world had coronavirus-related travel restrictions in place, describing the restrictions as “unprecedented (in) scope and severity.”
Natalia Banulescu-Bogdan, associate director of the Migration Policy Institute’s international program, described what she said was an “extraordinary acceleration” in travel restrictions.
Just a handful of countries had travel restrictions in place at the beginning of March, she said at a recent event on the pandemic’s migration impacts. Weeks later, most countries had travel restrictions in place.
“I think almost every country in the world at this point is playing with almost every tool it has available for almost every category of entry,” she said.