FREDERICTON -- New Brunswick says it's "strongly considering" easing travel restrictions to allow some Quebec residents living near its border to visit the province without having to self-isolate for 14 days.

There is a strong sense of community between those Quebec residents and the New Brunswick cities of Campbellton and Edmundston, Blaine Higgs said in a statement Friday.

"We are exploring whether it is feasible to ease our border restrictions to reunite these communities, while still keeping New Brunswick residents safe," he said.

Higgs said the Health Department is compiling COVID-19 data and collecting public health advice before presenting recommendations next week.

Nova Scotia Premier Stephen McNeil said Friday a deal between New Brunswick and Quebec won't exclude Quebec residents from having to self-isolate if they enter his province.

"Anyone who would come into New Brunswick from Quebec, from the Gaspe, would have access to New Brunswick, not to Nova Scotia," McNeil told reporters in Halifax.

"If they came to Nova Scotia they would be treated like everyone from Quebec. They would have to self-isolate for two weeks."

McNeil said New Brunswickers would still have access to his province without needing to self-isolate.

Residents of the four Atlantic provinces have been enjoying the so-called "Atlantic bubble" since July 3. It is the result of a deal between the provinces allowing residents to travel within the region without having to self-isolate for 14 days.

All four Atlantic provinces reported no new cases of COVID-19 Friday.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 17, 2020.

With files from CTV Atlantic's Laura Brown