WALES' First Minister has written to UK prime minister Boris Johnson urging him to tighten travel restrictions amid concerns over the new Covid variant.

It comes as the first cases of the Omicron Covid variant, which was first discovered in South Africa, have been identified in the UK.

The discovery has led to countries around the world changing rules and regulations on Covid, with early indications suggesting the the new variant could be more transmissible than Delta.

Mark Drakeford and Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon have penned a joint letter to Boris Johnson calling for tighter travel restrictions.

Currently there are 10 South African countries on the red list, meaning anyone travelling from one of these countries must isolate for 10-days upon arrival.

In addition, anyone arriving in Scotland from anywhere outside the common travel area will be asked to take a PCR Covid test on the second day of their arrival, and self-isolate until they get the result of that test back.

However, Nicola Sturgeon and Mark Drakeford want a four nations tightening of these rules, as confirmed by the Scottish first minister: "We know, however, that the incubation period for this virus is very often more than 2 days.

"So our view is that it would be sensible on a precautionary basis for these travel rules to be tightened further. That view is shared by the Welsh Government."

She added that they proposed "a tougher four-nations approach to travel restrictions, that "would see people arriving in the UK from overseas asked to self-isolate for eight days", taking a PCR test on day two and day eight of their arrival.

Explaining their reasoning for the proposed tightening of restrictions, Scotland's first minister said: "We believe that this measure would be more effective in identifying cases of the Omicron variant which result from overseas travel, and therefore at preventing further community transmission from imported cases."

According the Nicola Sturgeon, a four nations approach is vital to ensure any travel restrictions are effective.