Japan may ease border control measures in March
13:49 JST, February 14, 2022
Coronavirus-related border control measures for nonresident foreigners may be eased in March, starting with businesspeople and students, according to government sources.
Current regulations ban the entry of nonresident foreigners in principle, with the aim of preventing the spread of the omicron variant.
The government has been discussing whether to extend these controls, which are slated to remain in place until the end of this month.
There have been calls from the business community and ruling parties for the rules to be relaxed, and the government has likely concluded the need for strict border control measures has decreased due to the omicron variant becoming dominant among domestic infection cases.
The upper limit of entries into Japan stands at about 3,500 per day, but the government plans to gradually increase this number to about 5,000, the sources said.
The government is expected to announce its policy shift by the end of this week after examining the present infection situation.
“I’d like to review the framework of border control measures and consider relaxing them,” Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said during a visit to Haneda Airport on Saturday.
Prior to Nov. 30 — when the current measures were enacted — the government allowed foreign businesspeople, students and technical interns to enter the country under certain conditions.
Allowing such personnel to enter Japan is eyed as part of the policy change.
The government is also considering shortening the seven-day self-isolation period to three or five days for people returning to or entering Japan if they have received a COVID-19 vaccine booster shot, the sources said.
Currently, only nonresident foreigners who fall into a “special circumstances” category are allowed to enter the country.
According to government officials, a total of about 1,400 foreign students were granted access in January and February.
"SOCIETY" POPULAR ARTICLE
AI-generated Child Porn Floods Japan-based Website (Update 1)
Bears Sighted in Tokyo Suburbs, Including near Mt. Takao (Update 1)
Tokyo Dips below 10 C; Temperatures Fall in Japan
Junko Ohashi, singer of ‘Silhouette Romance,’ dies at 73
X Japan Bassist Heath Dies at 55; Yoshiki Thought to Have Returned to Japan for Him
JN ACCESS RANKING
- Japan, Vietnam Trade Ministers Discuss Supply Chains, IPEF
- BOJ Ueda: Japan Increasingly Likely to Hit Inflation Target
- Stimulus Package Set to Drive Greater Govt Borrowing; Likely Effectiveness Called into Question
- Japan 2023 Food Exports Reach 1 Tril. Yen at Record Pace