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Japan to double limit on foreign arrivals from next month

Japan to double limit on foreign arrivals from next month

A woman walks past a disease prevention instructions board at Haneda airport amid the COVID-19 outbreak in Tokyo, Japan, Aug 2, 2021. (File photo: Reuters/Androniki Christodoulou)

TOKYO: Japan will next month double its limit on foreign arrivals to 20,000 a day, the top government spokesperson said on Friday (May 20).

Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirokazu Matsuno told a regular news conference that travellers from most countries, about 80 per cent of the total foreign entrants to Japan, would not be required to provide proof of negative COVID-19 tests, nor would they have to quarantine on arrival.

This included people from all other members of the G7 group of developed economies.

Japan is accepting business travellers, foreign students and academics but not tourists, except a limited number in a trial of package tours.

Matsuno said experience with the trials would be used in later decisions to further reopen.

On Tuesday, Japan said that it would start conducting "test tourism" in the form of limited package tours in May as a way of gathering information prior to a full reopening of the country to tourism.

Tourists who have been triple-vaccinated and come from the United States, Australia, Thailand and Singapore will be allowed to take part in the tours, which will be strictly planned in conjunction with travel agencies and accompanied at all times by tour conductors, it added in a statement.

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida also said earlier this month during a speech in London that he would bring Japan's border controls into line with other wealthy democracies in June, but no further details have been given, including when the country will fully open its borders to tourists again.

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Source: Reuters/ng

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