The Chinese Immigration Department has announced that passport applications for citizens wishing to travel abroad will resume on January 8, 2023. The move comes after borders were effectively closed for nearly three years due to the COVID-19 pandemic, with China imposing some of the toughest quarantine measures. in the world.
Following the announcement on Monday, December 26th, there has been a surge in the number of Chinese citizens visiting travel websites looking to book international travel. Foreign travelers will eventually be allowed into the country, but must show proof of negative test results, and masks will still be required on flights.
However, as restrictions have been reimposed following the recent explosion of COVID cases in China, Chinese citizens wishing to travel to the United States and other countries must meet certain requirements.
“There is growing concern in the international community about the ongoing Covid-19 surge in China and the lack of transparent data, including genome sequence data for the virus,” a US official said in a statement.
“Without this data, it becomes increasingly difficult for public health officials to identify potential new subspecies and take rapid action to reduce their spread.”
The new rules stipulate that all passengers visiting the United States from China must provide a negative test result before boarding a flight, and the test must be taken up to two days before departure.
Other countries have also reintroduced entry restrictions for passengers traveling from China. Japan, one of the biggest markets for Chinese travelers, quickly announced a requirement for negative tests or a seven-day quarantine for passengers coming from China, as well as the autonomous regions of Macau and Hong Kong.
India, South Korea and Taiwan have also requested proof of negative test results, and Malaysia has reintroduced tracking and surveillance measures.
Italy has also become the first European country to impose restrictions on visitors from China after inspections at Rome’s Fiumicino Airport (FCO), while Milan’s Malpensa Airport (MXP) has imposed restrictions on those coming from China on arrival. revealed that half of them tested positive.
“This measure is essential to ensure the surveillance and identification of subspecies of the virus in order to protect the Italian population,” said Italian Health Minister Oraggio Schiracci.
Towards the end of the year, new COVID cases will likely continue to tighten restrictions on travelers in and out of China, further restricting travel to other countries in the coming months.