Mallorca and the Balearics are desperate to be on the green list. | Paula Berga

According to a report in The Independent, it is looking increasingly unlikely that Spain will be added to the UK's green list for safe travel when the next update is made - scheduled to be June 7.

The report refers to remarks that Boris Johnson apparently made at a meeting of the 1922 committee of Conservative Party backbench MPs. The prime minister is understood to have said that countries which were "near misses" for the current green list are likely to now be placed on it. These countries include Malta, Finland, Antigua and the Cayman Islands.

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As well as Spain, the implication is that other major vacation countries will remain on the amber list - Croatia, France, Greece and Italy. In addition, the report notes that the UK's department of transport has yet to adopt an "islands approach", by which the Balearics (and the Canaries) would be treated separately, something that transport secretary Grant Shapps said some weeks ago that he was in favour of. In the case of the Balearics in particular, as has been pointed out on numerous occasions, the incidence rate is very low, far lower than the Spanish national average. As of May 21, the national figure for the 14-day incidence was 135.77. In the Balearics it was 42, the third lowest behind Valencia (29.88) and the north African city of Ceuta (10.69). The Canaries rate was 83.96.

In addition, the vaccination programme is speeding up, the Balearic government having in mind the target of having vaccinated if not all but then a very high percentage of all people over the age of 50 come the first week of June. Mallorca's virus sequencing capacity is, meanwhile, much greater than most of the rest of Spain.

The Independent's report does, and not for the first time, point to apparently contradictory observations by UK ministers, the justice secretary, Robert Buckland, having claimed that the government is keen to see as many countries as possible on the green list. Grant Shapps told the BBC on Friday that he was "of course" pushing for the green list to be expanded.