No formal contracts awarded yet for quarantine hotels, says UK PM's spokesman

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Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic briefing at Downing Street

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain has yet to award any formal contracts to hotels or other accommodation to house those who have to quarantine after arriving in the country from abroad, a spokesman for Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Monday.

The mandatory 10-day stay in government-provided accommodation, first announced last month, is designed to tighten borders against variants of the coronavirus which could endanger Britain's vaccination programme.

"No formal contracts have been awarded yet ... DH (department for health) continue to work closely with hotels as we move forward to introduce the policy from Feb. 15," he told reporters, repeating that the government would set out further updates on the policy this week.

(Reporting by Elizabeth Piper; editing by Michael Holden)