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Kishida says Japan will ease border controls; daily entry cap to be raised to 5,000

67 Comments
By MARI YAMAGUCHI

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67 Comments
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It's a start.

9 ( +19 / -10 )

So before it was 7 days with a negative test, right?

Now it is eased to 3 days with a negative Covid test and a third booster shot.

Not a big progress in my opinion.

And the change from 3500 people to 5000 people per day is also not a big change.

-2 ( +31 / -33 )

The more things change...

-1 ( +10 / -11 )

I like the long quarantine as I have lots of overseas business trips. I get to chill in a nice hotel for a week, pretending to work, but actually watching Netflix and chilling out. And my company pays for it all!

-3 ( +25 / -28 )

"It's not realistic to ease the measures all at once,"

Yes it is but not for the Japanese government, here everything is purposely drawn out so even a bad decision looks carefully considered because of the glacial speed of change.

5 ( +23 / -18 )

Kishida said Japan will decide on a further easing of border controls based on a scientific assessment of the Omicron variant,

First time for everything I suppose.

13 ( +20 / -7 )

the daily entry cap will be raised to 5,000, including Japanese citizens and foreign residents,

Don't expect any massive increase in numbers being let in, particularly with tourists, until other countries (besides Japan) eliminate their requirements for PCR tests before arrival.

Because for everyone let into Japan, it means at least the same number going out (again, particularly with tourists) and Japan does not have the capacity to do all the PCR tests necessary for people to leave Japan and be allowed to enter a different country. Especially when most of that testing will be concentrated in Tokyo and results will be needed within 24-48 hours.

Seriously, last Monday, at the height of the epidemic here, Tokyo managed to test only about 8,000 people! But... but... it was a holiday and nobody travels then....

10 ( +19 / -9 )

Many Japanese have been supportive of the tight border controls because they think troubles such as the pandemic come from outside the island nation. Kishida's stringent controls are widely seen as politically motivated to gain public support for his governing party in July parliamentary elections.

That’s what you get when you have a government that brainwash it’s population with such propaganda of fear.

Anyway rising the number of just less than a few thousands is just a lip service aimed to show their best tatemae to the world community.

4 ( +19 / -15 )

Divinda,

It’s Japan, Jgov will just allocate what little test capacity they have to tourists to show the world how good it is here.

1 ( +13 / -12 )

For the entire duration of Omicron, no testing required for domestic travel, no restrictions worth a damn yet somehow travelling from abroad is used to show the only tangible 'tough stance' against it. Pathetic.

18 ( +22 / -4 )

very basic first step but still a long way to go.

10 ( +14 / -4 )

Essentially the ban on foreigners continues

13 ( +23 / -10 )

Alan,

It’s Japan, what tourists?

2 ( +7 / -5 )

I do not believe the Japanese people supported a blanket ban, maybe tourists but not blocking all foreigners

-2 ( +8 / -10 )

I was expecting that they would start letting people in just because its the new fiscal season. Guess not. will be interesting to see what effect this will have on salaries. Especially for foreigners..

-6 ( +6 / -12 )

A large number of countries STILL have to quarantine for 3 days at a govt facility even if their citizens are vaccinated and boosted. What’s the “science” behind that? Just plain moronic.

5 ( +13 / -8 )

Does the shortened quarantine period also start on March 1?

It seems to me this measure will have the biggest effect, not just on us foreign residents but Japanese yearning to travel overseas again. Yet Kishida barely mentioned it and was very short on specifics.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said the daily entry cap will be raised to 5,000, including Japanese citizens and foreign residents, from the current 3,500 beginning March 1. The decision is good news for foreign scholars, exchange students and business travelers who have been unable to enter, but does not cover tourists.

I read the entire article and this several times... it doesn't actually say (at least on JT) that they are allowing in students or working visas. It say "this is good news for students" .... but where does it say they are allowing in other visa types? It just says they are reducing the quarantine and allowing 1,500 more people a day. Can someone confirm if they are actually allowing in students and other working visas?

5 ( +8 / -3 )

From January we went from 14 days to 3 days with a booster and yet so many are complaining. I am not up the present PM, however, it appears he is doing his best to make changes and he should be given more credit and less griping.

-14 ( +5 / -19 )

This fool has no idea what's he's doing.

-5 ( +12 / -17 )

it appears he is doing his best to make changes and he should be given more credit and less griping.

But what do your top-secret sources in the medical field or the shiyakusho think? C'mon, we are all dying for the latest information!

3 ( +8 / -5 )

Don't expect any massive increase in numbers being let in, particularly with tourists, until other countries (besides Japan) eliminate their requirements for PCR tests before arrival.

Because for everyone let into Japan, it means at least the same number going out (again, particularly with tourists) and Japan does not have the capacity to do all the PCR tests necessary for people to leave Japan and be allowed to enter a different country. Especially when most of that testing will be concentrated in Tokyo and results will be needed within 24-48 hours.

For me the limiting factor is the availability of quarantine facilities.

For now for example, the additional number of travellers that will/can be let in depends on the estimate of quarantine spaces that will be available again sooner as a result of shortening quarantine from 7to 3 days or 0 depending on circumstances

1 ( +3 / -2 )

If you are still detaining vaccinated and PCR negative arrivals it is not progress.

7 ( +12 / -5 )

"A large number of countries STILL have to quarantine for 3 days at a govt facility even if their citizens are vaccinated and boosted. What’s the “science” behind that? Just plain moronic."

Add to that people who have recovered from a previous infection. Absolutely unscientific.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

As long as 53% are against easing the controls , he will not risks his popularity.

This is scientific. Political science one on one.

11 ( +11 / -0 )

"Now is the most difficult time to cope. I seek cooperation from everyone for just a little longer so we can overcome this difficulty," he said.

Lost count how many times we heard this phrase about "now beng the most difficult time & just a little longer " in the last 2 years.

12 ( +13 / -1 )

What world recognised groups are classing Japan entry/ visa laws as unscientific and xenophobic ???? Is it WHO ? Is it other nations ? The UN ? You can not make that statement without giving the important detail of whom is stating that Japan’s entry as unscientific and xenophobic. Clearly it’s is very cautious but not unscientific. The first precautions to deal with this virus is isolation. So the term unscientific has no bases. A results of isolation is to restrict socialising. That not xenophobic that is called a health precaution. That statement should be remove and a apology issued by JT for interpreting Japans entry laws as unscientific and xenophobic when they are exactly health restriction place on entry nothing more nothing less. I myself hate these entry restriction and are causing untold pressure on my relationships with my J”partner and friends. But I can not classify these laws as unscientific and xenophobic.

-17 ( +3 / -20 )

Hmmm. Would 5,004 people admitted make a difference?

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Omicron is already widespread in Japan. The chances of a vaxxed, negative-tested person coming into Japan and increasing the spread is pretty low.

14 ( +16 / -2 )

Just getting all doc's organised for my biz visa... Fingers crossed. It goes in March 1st.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

As long as 53% are against easing the controls , he will not risks his popularity.

This is scientific. Political science one on one.

The old boys in charge don't care about polls, and won't open the borders based on any opinion but their own.

You know what's popular? 81% of Japanese support the idea of a female emperor, yet political backing on that wildly popular concept.

Political science? More like political dysfunction.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

i feel still to early to seriously consider any travel out of this country...

Japan have many place places to visit anyway,I have waited 2 years will be OK wait a bit more until will be allowed freely and normally as before without any tests and so on...

-7 ( +5 / -12 )

faranglaosToday 06:54 am JST

It's a start.

Not really, governments always ease up a little on the proletariat when they think there maybe some blowback, this will carry on with more and more fear mongering, shut downs, until the economy cannot recover and a so called great reset put into place. This so called Great Reset will not be in the proletariats interest, it never is. Once the State is allowed to have an inch, they will take a mile, and whatever they took away you will never get back. Throw the dog a bone, and they keep all the meat. People should never ever let governments control people, people should control governments, but in today's world you can plainly see who controls who.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Spouses please. I have family in Japan!

5 ( +8 / -3 )

So, when exactly, can I visit my dying Mum, and come back to my family in Japan?

8 ( +8 / -0 )

So, when exactly, can I visit my dying Mum, and come back to my family in Japan?

Right now, if you are an established resident of Japan. Go ahead and book your flight.

Yesterday too.

Actually, anytime since August 2020.

As a matter of fact, you don't even need to be vaccinated to enter Japan if you are an established resident, but you will need to probably need to do the full 14 day quarantine

(I expect many people to shrill that what I said is wrong and Japan strictly requires vaccination to enter, but for established residents and citizens vaccines are needed only to avoid the full quarantine).

But you will need a negative test to return to Japan, and probably one to enter the country your Mum is in, unless its the UK or one of the few outliers (but I advise getting one no matter what to depart Japan, since I doubt Japan's exit immigration and/or the airline will allow you to leave without that negative test despite what may actually be required or not be required with where you are going).

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Rodney...

So, when exactly, can I visit my dying Mum, and come back to my family in Japan?

Tomorrow... Or last week, last month...

You have been free to leave AND return to Japan for many months. May have to quarantine on return but surely your mum is worth it.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

John-SanToday  08:59 am JST

What world recognised groups are classing Japan entry/ visa laws as unscientific and xenophobic ???? Is it WHO ? Is it other nations ? The UN ? You can not make that statement without giving the important detail of whom is stating that Japan’s entry as unscientific and xenophobic. Clearly it’s is very cautious but not unscientific. The first precautions to deal with this virus is isolation. So the term unscientific has no bases. A results of isolation is to restrict socialising. That not xenophobic that is called a health precaution. That statement should be remove and a apology issued by JT for interpreting Japans entry laws as unscientific and xenophobic when they are exactly health restriction place on entry nothing more nothing less. I myself hate these entry restriction and are causing untold pressure on my relationships with my J”partner and friends. But I can not classify these laws as unscientific and xenophobic.

You are forgiven as you don't live in Japan and don't know what is or has been

happening here.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

Adding the third booster requirement certainly makes this less appealing.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

I'd like to see the "science" that says foreigners are more likely to spread Covid than Japanese...

Especially in light of the fact that cases are rampant in Japan currently!

Just pure racist BS as expected from these cronies!

4 ( +10 / -6 )

Kishida said Japan will decide on a further easing of border controls based on a scientific assessment of the Omicron variant,

The irony. Show me any science that tells 3 days is a good number.

With decisions they are fine setting rules out on a whim. With indecisions, they blame science.

Kishida is the worst PM ever.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

I hope the booster requirement is an indication of the Japanese goverment's faith in boosters, which we will soon get to see in the form of a very rapid implementation of boosters in Japan for everyone who wants one.

Most people entering Japan are residents who are re-entering the country after leaving for business or family reasons. It is unfair to penalize them for not having booster shots the country they live in (i.e., Japan) will not give them. In my town, noone under 60 has been boosted. Hardly any elderly have been either.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Soon to be reversed, for sure.

https://edition.cnn.com/2022/02/17/health/ba-2-covid-severity/index.html

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

I hope that spouses of Japanese nationals are included soon, I really want to take my son to see his grandma and grandpa up in Tohoku. My wife could take him on her own, but we really enjoy going to visit as a family.

Commence the downvotes!

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

I hope that spouses of Japanese nationals are included soon, I really want to take my son to see his grandma and grandpa up in Tohoku. My wife could take him on her own, but we really enjoy going to visit as a family.

Commence the downvotes!

You would deserve a downvote but this time I'll refrain from doing it.

Why don't you just go and visit your family in Touhoku then? You were never kept from doing so in the first place.

オミクロン株に対応して、「特段の事情」による入国が認められる例は以下のとおりです。

...

(2)新規入国する外国人であって,以下のいずれかに該当する者

...

イ 日本人・永住者の配偶者又は子

ウ 定住者の配偶者又は子で、日本に家族が滞在しており、家族が分離された状態にあるもの

5 ( +6 / -1 )

I hope that spouses of Japanese nationals are included soon

Aren't you allowed now?

I thought spouses or children of japanese nationals are allowed

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Noooooooo! Everyone should stay home forever! Just watch netflix and get uber eats. Are you wearing a mask? How many vaccines have you had? OVER THE NOSE!

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

This is Japan... somehow I like it!

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

@KuroTokage

My understanding is that as the spouse of a Japanese national, I'd need to be going to a funeral or to visit an in-law on their deathbed or some such, and I'd have to be able to PROVE it.... and even then the approval process would be hit or miss.

Several months ago we were allowed in no questions asked, but no longer.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

My understanding is that as the spouse of a Japanese national, I'd need to be going to a funeral or to visit an in-law on their deathbed or some such, and I'd have to be able to PROVE it.... and even then the approval process would be hit or miss.

Several months ago we were allowed in no questions asked, but no longer.

You have always been able to to reunite with your family - and that has not nor will it ever change. The information provided by the Foreign Ministry regarding this fact have not changed either - Even though any person with basic knowledge about Japanese law would have known that even without being told so explicitly since family and marriage sees special protection under Japanese law.

Or which part of the following don't you understand?

(2)新規入国する外国人であって,以下のいずれかに該当する者(注3) ア 令和2年8月31日までに再入国許可をもって現在上陸拒否の対象地域に指 定されている国・地域に出国した者であって,その国・地域が上陸拒否の対象 地域に指定された後,再入国許可の有効期間が満了し,その期間内に再入国す ることができなかったもの イ 日本人・永住者の配偶者又は子 ウ 定住者の配偶者又は子で,日本に家族が滞在しており,家族が分離された状 態にあるもの

Like to read the PDF by yourself?

Here we go. http://www.moj.go.jp/isa/content/001347330.pdf

But as another person has already mentioned, one would have assumed that your wife, if she is Japanese, would have known about that and a one minute call to the Foreign Ministry would have clarified this as well.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Is this the end to the hotel bento?

2 ( +3 / -1 )

My understanding is that as the spouse of a Japanese national, I'd need to be going to a funeral or to visit an in-law on their deathbed or some such, and I'd have to be able to PROVE it..

My understanding is that those are two separate conditions that by itself may be allowed entry to Japan.

Can only read English myself

https://www.moj.go.jp/isa/content/001361129.pdf

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I think the confusion surrounding spouses being able to enter was because it was listed under the "special exceptional circumstances" list, and many people understood that to mean you needed an extra, exceptional reason to enter, when actually the mere fact of being a spouse was the "exceptional circumstance".

Also, short-term visitor spouse visas have been banned at various times.

But yes, right now you can get any kind of "Spouse visa" and I think, long-term "Dependent visas"

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Is this the end to the hotel bento?

No. Now there will be more of them. Take a look at ticket prices then faint and consider a loan.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

driucifer: Mate yes I am not there and haven’t been for 3 years. I returned home to fight fires in my home town which got destroyed then COVID happen then my Japanese partner had a brain aneurysm in March 2020. We been together for 6 years prior. Yes I kinda knew what’s going on there because we Skype every night. We not married so I can be classed had a spouse but prior to leaving we lived together since August 2014. Like I stated mate. I hate these entry restriction but you can not class them as unscientific and xenophobic. Start the downvotes. I hit -15 with my original comment.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

So conservative in these respects, while absolutely blasé and gung ho regarding public debt spending.

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

I wonder how long they debate to make that decision?

from 3500 to 5000! such a big, brave incredible decision, respect :))

2 ( +3 / -1 )

travelbangaijinToday 07:56 am JST

I do not believe the Japanese people supported a blanket ban, maybe tourists but not blocking all foreigners

LOL they do if they visit ganjin ghettos like here :P

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

This country can launch a satellite on moving asteroid moving at thousands of miles an hour in the middle of space to take samples and send them back to Earth.

Design HID lights on cars that can see the hair on a racoon dogs ass.

This country has some of best and brightest doctors and hospitals in the world.

But it can not recognize that the locks down are as useless as the i-potty.

My fiancée is double vaxxed and boosted like me and lives in area where that has been under 10 cases in her Barrio No deaths. Since this pandemic started.

She poses no threat to Japan. She can contribute to Japanese society and work and speak the Japanese language. And pay her taxes... We just want to get married.

But yeah Japan let's let in a bunch a kids that went nuts during spring break mask-less/ then will go crazy here during spring break 2, After a few pops, yep here we go. Mask-less of course ,once inebriated. And let's let them in 5000 at a time.

Its all about those tuitions fees...Next the tourism business owners will start to revolt. I mean why not. If the Universities and Voc-tech schools in Japan can get the money now. Why not Universal studios or Tokyo Disney...and the small out of the way tourists spots all over this country. Its coming mark my words.

Nothing in the world makes sense anymore.

Open it up like before and live your life. That was the deal get vaxxed live your life.

Enough.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

At least I’m not forced to have the seasonal influenza jab by the company I used to work for every year.

5000 people a day is not the same as the 19,000,000 tourist in 2019.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

@TokyoJoe

Kishida said Japan will decide on a further easing of border controls based on a scientific assessment of the Omicron variant,

First time for everything I suppose.

And it's still a lie.

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

Had a great conversation with a friend of mine yesterday who basically told me verbatim that the reason the borders were closed to foreigners is that the Japanese are excellent at following common sense measures to control the spread of the virus, and that foreigners were not. Although I felt a little like a baby seal being clubbed, I found her candid and unfiltered assessment of the current state of play pleasantly refreshing.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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