Japan to review travel restrictions for business people, students

Tokyo, Nov 2 (EFE).- Japan Tuesday said it would review its border restrictions to allow more business travelers and students but maintain the ban on tourists,

Government spokesperson Hirokazu Matsuno said the government planned to ease entry restrictions gradually after a decline in coronavirus infections.

But he emphasized the need to maintain a certain level of caution to prevent a resurgence of Covid-19.

The government spokesperson, who did not offer details about what the relaxation would entail, made the remarks in response to a question about a report on the matter by the Nikkei newspaper a few hours before his daily press briefing.

The newspaper said Japan was planning to open its borders for visitors on short business trips, students, and participants of technical trainee programs, most of whom were stranded abroad for more than a year.

The Japanese government is likely to announce the changes this week to implement them in November.

In addition to allowing more daily entries into the country, which would remain closed to tourism, for now, the policy changes would include a reduction in the quarantine period for vaccinated short-term business visitors, according to Nikkei.

The standard quarantine period in Japan is 14 days. At least three of these days have to be in government-designated facilities if travelers come from countries where highly contagious strains of the coronavirus such as the Delta variant are present.

Currently, the government can reduce the quarantine period for vaccinated travelers to 10 days if they meet requirements, including undergoing additional PCR tests.

The government considers shortening it to three days for those arriving on short-term business trips as long as their companies monitor their activities, Nikkei said.

Japan has an entry ban on foreigners and only allows the entry of its nationals and residents with some exceptions that the authorities consider on a case-by-case basis.

Some 370,000 foreigners were unable to enter the country due to its border restrictions as of Oct.1.

Out of these, some 70 percents are students and technical trainees, Nikkei reported. EFE


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