Spain has joined Greece in insisting that the UK’s coronavirus infection rate “still had to improve” before British holidaymakers are allowed to return.

Comments by Spanish tourism minister Maria Reyes Maroto to the country’s media raised the prospect that visitors from other nations would be welcomed first.

Spain is set to open its borders to international tourists and drop a current 14-day quarantine rule from July 1.

“For us it is important to guarantee that people arrive healthy and leave healthy,” Reyes Maroto told Spanish media.

She said that travellers from Germany and the Nordic countries such as Norway and Denmark were most likely to be allowed to participate in a tourism test-run due to take place in the next two weeks.

“At this moment, their epidemiological situations are very good,” she said.

The pilot scheme will require tourists to undergo coronavirus tests at the airport and then remain isolated for six hours in their hotels to await the results.

The Balearic government plans to test the procedure, as well as other Covid-19 safety protocols, on 5,000 visiting German nationals in mid-June, before the country opens its borders further.

Four hotels in Majorca, in Platja de Palma and Alcúdia, have reportedly agreed to take part from June 16, as well as another in Ibiza and a one in Formentera.

Other regional government leaders across Spain are expected to be approached about the idea of running a pilot test for visitors, with popular destinations such as the Costa Blanca and Costa del Sol tipped to be considered, according to the Daily Telegraph.

Holidaymakers from 29 countries, excluding the UK, will be allowed access to Greece in two weeks.