A new Covid-19 testing device has been launched at the main airport on the Tanzanian island of Zanzibar, a popular tourist destination.
Passengers arriving at the Abeid Amani Karume International Airport are now being tested using a scanner to detect the virus instead of having to provide nose or mouth swabs.
This technological advancement is a result of research, costing about $1bn (£737m), that was conducted by the government of Abu Dhabi – which is part of the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
Zanzibar and Abu Dhabi have enjoyed a long-standing relationship, and the Tanzanian archipelago has always had many visitors from the UAE.
The first batch of travellers to be tested using the new device jetted in on Fly Dubai on Wednesday morning.
“It’s very fast and efficient. I couldn’t believe that I had already been scanned within the shortest time and that my results are out,” said one traveller from Saudi Arabia.
Zanzibar’s health minister said the country had not registered any Covid-19 cases since January and that the authorities there were happy to embrace any technology that would ease pressure on tourists.
The semi-autonomous region, just like any other parts of Tanzania, has been greatly affected by the pandemic.
About a year ago, Zanzibar’s vice-president was among those who succumbed to the virus.