There is a risk that the variant first identified in India will be transmitted by people traveling outside the UK, Sir Jeremy farrar mentionned.
The director of the Wellcome Trust told TBEN Radio 4’s Today program: “Britain is a very connected and very small country and the risk of local cases becoming regional and then regional becoming national is very clear.
“And it’s also connected internationally and I think it’s also a problem not only for importing new variants entering the country, but also for people traveling out of the country – there is a risk that this variant B.617 can be transmitted from You know.
“I think travel should still be very careful and only when it is absolutely essential.
“But the only way to stop these variants is to reduce the transmission.”
He added: “The biggest risk for countries like the UK – which have been very successful in deploying vaccines – is that the variants crop up from anywhere in the world and then spread around the world when ‘they have a biological advantage.
“So reducing transmission is essential in this country, but it is the same in the rest of the world, and that means reducing transmission and making vaccines available globally.”