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ACCJ urges Japan to end 'double standard' re-entry rules

124 Comments
By Kiyoshi Takenaka

A U.S. business body has asked Japan to eliminate "double standard" re-entry rules and treat all residents returning to the country equally during the COVID-19 pandemic regardless of their nationality.

Japan allows its citizens to return to the country on condition they take a polymerase chain reaction test and observe a period of self-quarantine, while foreigners living in Japan face much higher hurdles for re-entry.

"Foreign residents of Japan ... should not be subject to a double standard restricting their travel, economic and familial opportunities based on nationality," the American Chamber of Commerce in Japan (ACCJ) said in a statement dated July 13.

Foreigners living in Japan on a long-term basis, such as permanent residents and spouses of Japanese nationals, can re-enter the country if they left Japan before their destination was named as one of the 129 countries from which Japan is banning visits.

But if they left Japan for a country after the ban, the returnees need documentary proof they had exceptional reasons for their trips, such as a funeral or medical treatment, to be considered for re-entry approval.

A spokesman at Japan's Immigration Services Agency said he had no immediate comment on the ACCJ statement.

Catherine Ancelot, a French interpreter who has lived in Japan for 32 years, said she was indignant.

"I cannot see why permanent residents like me and other long-term residents are being discriminated against by nationality," Ancelot said.

Shoichi Ibusuki, a Japanese lawyer active on immigration issues, said the measures were damaging Japan's national interest.

"This is being called 'Japan risk' among foreigners living in Japan ... This residence status-related risk has prompted many foreigners to think twice about settling here and to look seriously into moving to other countries," he said.

© Thomson Reuters 2020.

©2020 GPlusMedia Inc.

124 Comments

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Good to see some higher level pressure being put on this.

Hopefully there will be some action done very soon to remedy it.

47 ( +51 / -4 )

I think the rules should be loosened in many cases, but the problem with calling this discrimination is that Japan has little choice in allowing its own citizens back into the country. International law makes it extremely difficult for countries to refuse their own citizens. If Japan could get away with excluding everyone who left at the height of the pandemic, I suspect they would do so, and it would be widely supported by the general public.

-24 ( +18 / -42 )

I demand the reopening of borders to every single visa holder! I wouldn't mind quarantining myself or taking the test, as long as I can go visit my family this Christmas.

12 ( +22 / -10 )

THANK YOU!!

15 ( +17 / -2 )

All people who were living in the country prior to Covid-19 should have the same travel restrictions.

20 ( +25 / -5 )

It’s the land of do as I say not as I do - Double standards.

21 ( +25 / -4 )

Did the ACCJ said anything about US army forces in Okinawa and Aomori, who lied to Japanese authorities and took public transportation and carried the Covid 19 with them?

-9 ( +16 / -25 )

@M3M3M3

International law makes it extremely difficult for countries to refuse their own citizens.

Japan doesn't care about International law.

If Japan could get away with excluding everyone who left at the height of the pandemic, I suspect they would do so, and it would be widely supported by the general public.

I suspect you are wrong about this.

17 ( +23 / -6 )

It’s a good idea and japan needs the book thrown at them for this, but they’ve never really been concerned about things like this. Now, if it were on TV overseas...

21 ( +26 / -5 )

Finally! And yes it IS a double standard. No need to put it in quotations. If Canada or another western country had done this they would be called out on discrimination and racism.

"This is being called 'Japan risk' among foreigners living in Japan ... This residence status-related risk has prompted many foreigners to think twice about settling here and to look seriously into moving to other countries," he said.

true. I'm one of them.

25 ( +30 / -5 )

Thank you ACCJ for the move. My family went to home country before pandemic. They can not return. Its 6 months now. Kids can not come back home, can not go to school. Loosing the trust in government after staying here for 15years.

15 ( +20 / -5 )

"This is being called 'Japan risk' among foreigners living in Japan ... This residence status-related risk has prompted many foreigners to think twice about settling here and to look seriously into moving to other countries," he said.

It's pretty simple if one feels that deeply that they are not wanted don't settle and keep on moving. Not all systems are perfect and quit trying to use of discrimination, what nonsense, they are much harder on full Japanese residing here regardless of status.

-20 ( +6 / -26 )

With no vaccine and time ticking on, the spectators and visitors to the Tokyo Olympics 2021 could be only Japanese citizens and foreign residents who haven't left the country in a very long time. A bizarre but fairly realistic scenario, given that the Tokyo authorities are pledging that the Games go on.

17 ( +22 / -5 )

A U.S. business body has asked Japan to eliminate "double standard" re-entry rules and treat all residents returning to the country equally during the COVID-19 pandemic regardless of their nationality.

since this is a US business body, shouldn't they advocate embargos or at least tarriffs on J products if this double standard continues

9 ( +16 / -7 )

Thank you ACCJ.

It's bothering to see how Japan authorities treat foreigners here and expect Japanese nationals to be treated fairly when the go abroad.

I think the leadership here lives in a bubble and fails or does not know many or all foreigners here share information with their families and friends abroad.

I for one have brothers,sisters and friends who live in different countries and some are in gvt positions there and we share a lot of information every single day over different apps.

They've been here before but settling here did not even cross their minds.

I came here as a student and I decided to stay after graduation but the system here is very difficult and many foreigners opt to leave.And Japan still thinks it can attract foreign skills?Good luck with that.

I speak good Japanese without an accent and many Japanese do not know they're speaking to a foreigner over the phone until I mention my name and immediately the tone and situation on the other end changes.Many express shock like in a horror movie.

My name alone closes the door.

15 ( +21 / -6 )

@M3M3M3

If Japan could get away with excluding everyone who left at the height of the pandemic, I suspect they would do so,

Are you a sociopath? Can you feel pity, empathy, concerns for people around you?

2 ( +14 / -12 )

This is such a mess. I've lived my entire adult life in Japan. I pay taxes here. I have a house here, my Japanese husband, my Japanese daughter... I have nothing back in the States but family.

My grandparents are quite old and my grandfather is battling stomach cancer in his mid 80's. I cannot risk going back to the States to say goodbye or (god forbid) a funeral on the probability I would not be let back into Japan. I have a child here who I cannot risk abandoning. My Japanese in-laws need my assistance, I cannot be gone for very long. So odds are I will never see my Grandparents again.

Once again showing that Japan cares for no one but native born citizens of Japanese blood.

Thanks, Japan.

34 ( +37 / -3 )

"This is being called 'Japan risk' among foreigners living in Japan ... This residence status-related risk has prompted many foreigners to think twice about settling here and to look seriously into moving to other countries," he said.

many foreigner residents if not most fail to realize how thin, fragile is the line that supports their whole lives in Japan. In our minds, we are tax paying citizens. In the japanese eyes, temporary guests allowed in out of clemency. This after 10, 20 years in Japan. We are not citizens of this country as we want to imagine. Go protest something on the streets and have the same fate of Ronald McLean.

16 ( +21 / -5 )

That didn't not take long. Where is the Foreign Correspondents Club on this issue?

12 ( +16 / -4 )

Really spits in the face of all the "we support foreigners"... don't understand this.

15 ( +19 / -4 )

I honestly don't want to go anywhere at the moment but if I really had to i'd just apply for re-entry.......

-15 ( +4 / -19 )

Good that the EU first and now the ACCJ pressure the J-government about this issue.

This is simply outrageous, unjust and inhuman way to treat another human being that dedicated it’s life in a country where in the end expats have only responsibilities but not same rights as their natives.

I am sure that many expats that live in Japan and settled here now regret their choice of life and with to be somewhere else.

13 ( +18 / -5 )

But if they left Japan for a country after the ban, the returnees need documentary proof they had exceptional reasons for their trips, such as a funeral or medical treatment, to be considered for re-entry approval.

Well this was better than what I thought it was initially. Because I read an article on here saying that a woman said that she couldn’t go to a funeral in France, because of these restrictions, because she was a foreign national. So I’m glad that that restriction at least, was never in place, because that would’ve been so cruel if that were the case. Not that this overall policy isn’t hypocritical, it is, but I’m glad that it wasn’t quite as bad as I initially thought that it was.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

@divinda Wow, it’s like you took the words right out of my mouth. Absolutely, I think something will be done about it, considering the pressure is now coming from a higher level. Keeping my fingers crossed.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

People, write to your home countries’ media outlets. Tell them what’s going on, ask them to report it. You may be surprised and we may get some equal treatment!

11 ( +11 / -0 )

Apparently, Japan is still considering whether or not easing the re-entry ban on allowing re-entry of long-term residents is something possible. But hey, they are already planning on letting athletes enter Japan for the Olympics. Isn't that exciting?!

I have no words left to describe this behavior. Only insults.

17 ( +19 / -2 )

Everyone complains about this but no one really does anything substantial. How about we organize a demonstration to put some more pressure to the government?

7 ( +10 / -3 )

Permanent Residence status should be respected by the govt, after all you can get a house loan, own property do most things except vote and permanent residence means you have put down some fairly deep roots here in most cases.

If the Japanese Govt wants to treat long term visa holders with such blatant disregard then maybe others will decide that there is no good will, trust or respect in this Govt and therefore should rethink their future life plan.

At the drop of a hat the Japanese Govt can & will terminate your life here and think nothing of it.

Cold Cruel Callous and Completely Uncalled for ! Shame on you Japan.

17 ( +20 / -3 )

As the U.S. abandons a restriction that would have prevented many international students from traveling between their home countries and the U.S., Japan unfortunately continues its restriction on the movements of foreign national permanent residents.

Very disappointing.

11 ( +13 / -2 )

while foreigners living in Japan face much higher hurdles for re-entry.

Higher hurdles? Try 'brick wall'.

can re-enter the country if they left Japan before their destination was named as one of the 129 countries from which Japan is banning visits.

So someone who left for USA in January and stayed there until now is treated the same as someone who left for USA this week, spent a day there and wants to come back now? Does logic and reasoning exist within the Japanese government?

Foreign investment and skills are not going to stay in Japan if this 'unique' xenophobia continues. Is any other G7 country following the Japanese example?

rgcivilian1:

It's pretty simple if one feels that deeply that they are not wanted don't settle and keep on moving. Not all systems are perfect and quit trying to use of discrimination, what nonsense, they are much harder on full Japanese residing here regardless of status.

What on earth are you going on about? There are many people who had faith in this country, and by the time they realize how the government operates and backstabs the foreign community, they've already set up roots here and have family or business here. Stop it with all these apologies. Speak for yourself. I hope your elderly parents or relatives don't fall ill or worse, because if you're not Japanese you're going to either have to leave for a long long time to visit home or you can attend a funeral on the internet. Of course, you can say it's an exceptional case, but I wouldn't hold my breath with all this double standard.

Right at this moment, I don't think Japan deserves to hold the Olympics. At this rate, nobody from abroad will be able to or want to come.

12 ( +16 / -4 )

Well, I suppose the solution is to take up Japanese citizenship... though that would entail a different set of problems.

7 ( +11 / -4 )

I think many people here are failing to grasp the reality of the situation or the actual rules that have been put into place.

Every foreigner with family, a spouse, permanent or longterm residency in Japan is allowed to re-enter if they are arriving from a country that was placed on the travel restrictions list after they left Japan. Even for those who left recently, there are humanitarian exceptions made if you were visiting a sick relative, attending a funeral or seeking medical treatment and so on. Entry is also completely unrestricted for anyone who is arriving from any of the dozens of countries that have not been listed as Covid 19 hotspots, provided they have been there for at least 14 days.

The chamber of commerce types who want their employees to be able to fly around the world during a global pandemic will just have to wait until these temporary restrictions are lifted. Sorry.

The fact that Japanese citizens are being treated differently is just a quirk of international law, but it's largely irrelevant. It's not as if Japanese are actually taking advantage of this loophole by flying in and out of the country. Air travel has collapsed and virtually no Japanese citizens are travelling abroad. If more were to do so, the government would likely clamp down by putting more draconian quarantine rules in place to dissuade them. This is not an issue to become angry about, least of all during an unprecedented global pandemic.

-21 ( +4 / -25 )

I just realized, this restriction on resident foreigners is probably due to pathetic levels of testing at airports for anyone arriving from abroad.

Currently the number of tests possible at airports is about 1000, so they ar probably severly restricting resident foreigners from coming in since any influx of them would cripple their current testing capacity.

Another article on here today mentions increasing this testing capacity to 6000 arrivals per day "maybe in September", so until then, Japan probably has no intention of fully allowing in resident foreigners since they can't handle testing them. (and 6000/day would still only allow maybe just 2 dozen airplanes per day).

6 ( +9 / -3 )

@DLToday  

Thank you ACCJ for the move. My family went to home country before pandemic. They can not return. Its 6 months now. Kids can not come back home, can not go to school. Loosing the trust in government after staying here for 15years.

If they left "before the pandemic" then you mean before April (if indeed 6 months ago), which was when the first restrictions were put in place.

Then they specifically can re-enter RIGHT NOW and could have done so the entire time.

"Foreigners living in Japan on a long-term basis, such as permanent residents and spouses of Japanese nationals, can re-enter the country if they left Japan before their destination was named as one of the 129 countries from which Japan is banning visits."

Foreigners of such a situation currently do this every day right now.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

@M3M3M3

 

You are right, because Japan has eased restrictions for people who left before the entry ban.

But after that, we need special circumstances. And nothing is guaranteed and automatic.

Now, I cannot simply visit my family overseas if I would want and come back. But my Japanese wife can go to visit my family overseas as my country does now allow Japanese citizens to come in.

There is no visibility on how long it will continue, it could be 6 months, 1 year......

That is pure discrimination and lack of respect. I am now thinking seriously to leave after 20 years here and being a PR.

13 ( +17 / -4 )

bungle:

Well, I suppose the solution is to take up Japanese citizenship... though that would entail a different set of problems.

Hell will freeze over before I give up my passport.

15 ( +18 / -3 )

It is discriminatory and it is damaging Japanese interests. If you wanted skilled foreigners to work here, if you want companies to do business here, if you want the cash cow of tourism you need to be seen to treat your foreign residents with respect.

19 ( +20 / -1 )

It's bad news but also good news in that you get to know what the government really thinks of you no matter how long you've lived there sadly. The canard comes to a halt.

"This is being called 'Japan risk' among foreigners living in Japan ... This residence status-related risk has prompted many foreigners to think twice about settling here and to look seriously into moving to other countries," he said.

Not looking like they have any choice

11 ( +11 / -0 )

@didou

Now, I cannot simply visit my family overseas if I would want and come back. But my Japanese wife can go to visit my family overseas as my country does now allow Japanese citizens to come in.

There is no visibility on how long it will continue, it could be 6 months, 1 year......

Many of us are in the same boat. It's unfortunate but we are living in difficult and unprecedented times. Every country is setting its own policies based on their own predictions and risk tolerance. They have a responsibility not only to you but also to everyone else who fears the sorts of Covid 19 spikes we've seen in countries that didn't restrict travel. I would cut the government some slack here.

-9 ( +3 / -12 )

all foreigners can get the virus and carry it back in Japan regardless if they live in Japan or not. What's the problem with Japan's system?

-18 ( +2 / -20 )

Makoto Kimura, the situation in Okinawa has nothing to do with all the other foreigners living in Japan. That is between Japan and the US. You can’t penalize other foreigners for that. Maybe all G-7 countries should tell Japanese people living there that if they leave they can’t come back in. A simple tit for tat.

9 ( +11 / -2 )

Japan is a sovereign country and make its own rules and if foreigners don't like than they have to learn to love it or just leave. It's that simple. Thankx Japan for keeping an sane place here during this Corona comedy show

-17 ( +5 / -22 )

Also, I’ve said this before but let’s get the IOC on this. They could remedy the situation in two seconds. You don’t open your borders in a fair and equal way and we are pulling the Olympics.

9 ( +11 / -2 )

I don’t think nationally should specifically matter. Rather location is more important. Anyone who has been in countries that do not have the virus under control, should not be allowed in. We need to consider them infected. The societies they are coming from are infected.

-8 ( +3 / -11 )

Even for those who left recently, there are humanitarian exceptions made if you were visiting a sick relative, attending a funeral or seeking medical treatment and so on.

M3,

PLEASE be careful what you write as the above in my understanding is NOT correct. If I went back to Cda to see a sick parent or heaven forbid attend a funeral, on my return to Japan, there is NO GUARANTEE I can re-enter, there is NO FIRM govt policy in place, I have read that authorities MAY consider ones circumstances, BUT there is NOTHING in place that gives ANY concrete info in this regard.

So, if I went to Cda & was now returning basically I am at the mercy of NRT immigartion & heath inspectors whether I can re-enter or not & gues what THEY HAVE NO GUIDELINES on what is allowed or not.

So anyone who leaves Japan now is playing roulette for any return, this is UNACCEPTABLE, Japan has had now ample time to sort this & they have NOT! For shame!

And 10,000 +ves for the ACCJ for bringing this up, once again GAIATSU is the only way to get Japan to do whats write.............on rare occassions.

And yeah, talk about having 2nd thoughts on living in Japan now on my 30th ""anniversary"" here.............sad!

10 ( +14 / -4 )

Well, I suppose the solution is to take up Japanese citizenship... though that would entail a different set of problems.

If you're going to live in Japan for 30+ years like some posters here, you might as well.

However, the ideal solution is dual citizenship between Japan and other smart, trustworthy countries.

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

There are really two questions we need to ask in my view:

1.) Should people be engaging in none essential international travel to hotspots during a global pandemic?

2.) If not, is it reasonable to place some restrictions on around 60% of travellers (non-Japanese), even if we are unable to restrict the other 40% (Japanese)?

Ideally both Japanese citizens and foreigners would face the same restrictions, but just because we're prevented from imposing restrictions on everyone doesn't mean we're safer by placing restrictions on no-one.

@Strangerland

I don’t think nationally should specifically matter. Rather location is more important. 

Yes. That is indeed the current system. If someone were to fly to Japan after spending 14 days in places like Fiji, Mongolia, Kazakhstan or Cambodia, they would face no restrictions regardless of which foreign nationality or visa status they hold. The problem is obviously the suspension of commercial flights to many of these places.

@GW

PLEASE be careful what you write as the above in my understanding is NOT correct. If I went back to Cda to see a sick parent or heaven forbid attend a funeral, on my return to Japan, there is NO GUARANTEE I can re-enter, there is NO FIRM govt policy in place, I have read that authorities MAY consider ones circumstances, BUT there is NOTHING in place that gives ANY concrete info in this regard.

That's fair enough. There are no guarantees that your specific situation will qualify (or even that you will be believed), but there are explanatory notes explicitly providing these three specific examples.

http://www.moj.go.jp/content/001321982.pdf

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

Clearly, there are discriminatory rules being applied here.

The rules are not being based on science nor are they being applied logically.

A Japanese national has as much chance as being infected or a carrier as any other nationality.

All those being tested in Tokyo and being found infected is rising by the day.

To get tested is to pass through reams of red tape which certainly begs the question, how many are slightly ill and not being tested and how many are asymptomatic and won’t even be considered for a test?

To tackle foreigners entering Japan, in a satisfactory and well thought out manner is just way beyond the mindset of the leaders of Japan.

The rulers have closed the door again for want of logical reasoned thinking.....

8 ( +11 / -3 )

Thank you ACCJ. Does the British Consulate have any comment.? Hello, anybody home....?

3 ( +6 / -3 )

However, the ideal solution is dual citizenship between Japan and other smart, trustworthy countries.

I would consider a J-passport IF they allowed dual, but they dont, so I like many others I suspect posting on this thread would also consider taking on Japanese nationality if they allowed dual.

So we each have to weigh which is a better passport, current one or a Japanese passport, for most I suspect the Japanese passport is NOT worth it IF we have to give up the passport we have.

Sadly Japan is lagging in this regard as well, especially for couples where one is foreign & they have children, this forces them to choose, yes I know you can just keep a 2nd passport secret a bit, but there will always be that nagging wonder, what if Japan pushes harder on PICKING......this is totally a waste & unnecessary & Japan should have dealt with this as well long ago......but I digress.

8 ( +10 / -2 )

@tokyotigersdome The British Embassy in Japan has spoken on the issue and said they are “working” with the Japanese authorities to resolve the issue.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

So we each have to weigh which is a better passport, current one or a Japanese passport, for most I suspect the Japanese passport is NOT worth it IF we have to give up the passport we have.

It’s a personal decision for each person to make. The Japanese passport is way better than many peoples home citizenships. I’ve employed a couple of people for whom that was the case.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

The British Embassy in Japan has spoken on the issue and said they are “working” with the Japanese authorities to resolve the issue.

Great. All those British nationals waiting to re-enter or waiting to restart business trips can rest assured that the British Embassy are "working" on it...

Now some fact. I wrote to 'my' embassy in Japan asking for clarification on the issue and they don't even reply. You get a standard reply from the Foreign Office in the UK which is essentially a template full of url links.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

@doggar

all foreigners can get the virus and carry it back in Japan regardless if they live in Japan or not. What's the problem with Japan's system?

The problem is, that all Japanese people can get the virus and carry it back to Japan regardless if they live in Japan or not. Yet, they can enter. Come and go, as they please.

All the while foreigners, who have lived in Japan for years, have their jobs, apartments, families and other duties here, can not enter. Who in some cases, will end up loosing said jobs, apartments and maybe even families, without anyone covering for the losses, for the sake of the discriminatory rules, racist attitudes and lack of flexibility. I'm honestly questioning - isn't this situation already breaking some international human rights laws?

7 ( +9 / -2 )

Not all systems are perfect and quit trying to use of discrimination, what nonsense, they are much harder on full Japanese residing here regardless of status.

Absolute nonsense...they are much harder on full Japanese here ? Wth are you on about?

6 ( +9 / -3 )

Here is a fun fact. If you are a Permanent Resistant of Japan you must pay taxes to any money made abroad just like a Japanese citizen. Certainly, a PR should be let back into Japan from abroad like a Japanese Citizen.

8 ( +10 / -2 )

Ok I know this will not be popular! If you read correctly non Japanese with PR, etc... that left before their destination was added to the restricted list are treated the same as the Japanese returning. Now if they left Japan after their destination was added to that list then they are the only ones to blame if they cannot return.

The Japanese government has made exceptions for urgent matters like sudden death in the family, etc...

So if I leave to visit family or for some strange reason a vacation during the pandemic then it is my own fault if I am not let back in. Japan cannot stop Japanese from returning in the same way Canada, USA, etc... cannot stop their citizens from doing the same it would violate the constitution, so no choice. Is it another double standard yes and no and most western countries are not much different. But if the PR was not bright enough to postpone their travels after their destination was placed on the list then they get what the get. I have elderly parents to look after back in my country of birth but I canceled plans to go there knowing I could not return, so I made other arrangements for someone to look in on them for the time being.

-10 ( +3 / -13 )

kurisupisuToday 11:55 am JST

A Japanese national has as much chance as being infected or a carrier as any other nationality.

While superficially a reasonable argument, that ignores the counterpoint that this will only be true if we assume the Japanese national acts in EXACTLY the same way overseas as say an American (since it is an American body making the request).

Unfortunately, the statistics suggest this is untrue. Compared to Japan, America has advantages when it comes to preventing virus spread - for example, its population is much more spread out. That did not prevent the US from being the #1 most infected country in the world by a fair margin. We may at least suspect the cumulative effects of different habits.

As such, we may provisionally predict that an American is much more likely to catch it during his stay in America. The ACCJ ignores these realities and demands Japan unconditionally accept this high-risk individual because?

The argument also ignores the long term effects of legal precedent. A restraint that only applies to non-citizens MAY be discriminatory, but the fact is that there is a legal difference between resident and citizen. In upholding this distinction, it keeps the precedent compartmented and does not let it become a precedent that would affect the main zone.

In asking for "equal treatment" what ACCJ is asking for is to make NINETY-EIGHT percent suffer for the sake of equality for TWO percent (actually since because their main target is Americans, not foreigners).

-8 ( +4 / -12 )

Just so people know. Japan is not alone in such a policy. Canada has a case by case system it is not automatic that PR or spouses can enter or return to Canada. There are article after article on Canadian news sites of couples separate due to Canada's border closure especially with the USA. Even now the government is looking at possibly stricter rules due to several incidences were those arriving violated the 14 day quarantine rules. Like Japan Canada cannot under its constitution stop a Canadian citizen from returning.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

@ AntiquesavingToday 02:41 pm JST

Japanese can now travel free to Europe if they want, and come back.

Europeans PR, if they just wish to visit their family, can go but will not be allowed to come back.

It makes a huge difference.

Many families have been separate because of the discriminatory decision

5 ( +8 / -3 )

@Kazuaki Shimazaki

But if all returnees need to take a PCR test and spend 14 days in quarantine, why should their country of travel origin matter? If you required a second negative PCR test before leaving quarantine, this would decrease the statistical risk almost to zero.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

@didou As I pointed out, constitution of Japan limits the Japanese government in restricting reentry of their citizens it even in most cases limits restricting them from leaving, that is the constitution (anyone that has been here long enough remembers the government trying to stop the return from North Korea of the JAL hijackers and they couldn't) as for traveling to Europe that was the EU that lifted the ban on Japan not Japan. And again seeing Japan cannot stop their citizens there is nothing much the government can do. As for your situation sorry I am in the same boat but it will not be forever and those are the breaks when one chooses to life in another country! My grandfather left his home country for Canada never saw his parents again because travel was mostly fat to long (boat). I knew the risks conning here, we all did.

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

@Antiquesaving Today 02:54 pm JST

Canada has a case by case system it is not automatic that PR or spouses can enter or return to Canada.

Govt of Canada website:

"Will I be allowed to re-enter Canada if I’m a permanent resident?"

"Yes. If you’re a landed permanent resident and have no symptoms of COVID-19, you’re allowed to travel to Canada. If you are showing symptoms of COVID-19, you will not be allowed to enter Canada by air. You can still enter at a land border."

https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/services/coronavirus-covid19/permanent-residents.html

7 ( +9 / -2 )

It is a little hypocritical of the ACCJ complaining about Japan when the USA is fat worse in its treatment of non citizens. Look at the new rules regarding foreign students already in the USA and holding valid visas. If their university or school does not return to in person classes and remain online only or mostly as is the plan for most schools then these students must leave the USA by the end of the month. Before telling other countries what to do why not clean up your own country

-5 ( +4 / -9 )

@Bruce Chatwin

I suggest reading CBC occasionally as it has at least on article a week about families that are kept separated. As I wrote they are permitted to return/enter (at least in theory) but again it is not guaranteed and is up to the CBSA agents discretion. In other words case by case. You can quote Gov Can website all you want but any Canadian that has dealt with immigration Canada knows far to well what is said or on the website and how things are actually done are two very different things.

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

any Canadian that has dealt with immigration Canada knows far to well what is said or on the website and how things are actually done are two very different things.

I'm Canadian and that is not my experience.

I'd say more, but as it is probably better to be polite and end it here.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Here is what I don't get. If Japan is so bad and so mean to foreigners, why do you stay here. If the EU is much more welcoming then take you wife, family etc.. go there. Same for Canada, the USA, etc..

We came here either we knew what it was like levee quickly figured it out and decided to stay. 30 years here I hear the same complaint and often from the same people even people I warned and told them over and over what to expect, they stay anyway complaining. We knew and know how things are and acting all indignant, surprised, upset, etc.. only makes me ask where do you think you are living?

-6 ( +4 / -10 )

@Bruce Chatwin

30 years dealing with the Canadian embassy 15 trying to get my Canadian children into Canada, blocked at every turn until they turned 18 and Canada had no choice. But then the only people here I have ever hear say like you turned out to be working for the Canadian government.

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

@AntiquesavingToday 03:09 pm JST

Japan has also the right to ban its citizens to travel overseas. It does not.

Sorry, but when I came here 20 years ago, I did not know Japan would “ban” reentry for the PR, but still asking them to pay their taxes.

And also that PR would be required every time they come back to have their fingerprints and a picture taken at the airport. eventually not allowing to work and pay taxes.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

@didou

If I wasn't clear sorry but I thought I was clear Japan cannot stop its citizens from coming or going in most cases, there are a few exceptions like most countries certain criminals on probation and national security but for most they can do as they please, just like nearly every western country.

Finger printing is now done in nearly all countries I have been to, nothing different, be happy when I arrived it was not one finger but all in order to register for the gaijin card, you no longer have to pay for a re-entry permit, and if you travel that often you can apply for a quick pass and skip to whole thing. If you did not know your situation within a year of being here then you clearly did your best not to see it. It was clear to me 3 months in that I would never be treated equally and once you understand that you either stay or leave. But you do not stay complaining about it as it was and is very obvious.

Aa for why you are not allowed to work that I do not know, if you have a valid visa or PR then nothing stopping you. If you do not then that is another story. If the problem is visa type well that is no different than most other countries, you cannot work in a bar if your visa is that of an educator, nothing different from other countries. Spouse and PR you can do as you please, I have worked in everything from garbage collection, construction, education, IT, anything to pay the bills.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

Its nice of Japan to show its true face to world. Why foreigners go to Japan anyway ?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

@AntiquesavingToday 04:09 pm JST

Well, I can work because I am here, but in case I should leave urgently and not being able to reentry, I could not work anymore. I do not say that for me specially, but for all concerned.

Now, do countries you were also take fingerprints of PRs ? or only tourists ? That's a difference, right.

After only 3 months, I could not forecast anything, it was not clear for me at all because I could not speak Japanese at that time, which I can now, and therefore could not read and understand through the lines

4 ( +5 / -1 )

@didou if you read the article is clearly states if you had to leave for an urgent matter,  "such as a funeral or medical treatment" you can probably return as long as you present the needed documents and a valid reason. In Japan there are 2 types of PR one like most that arrived in the past few decades and one for those whose families have been here prior to 1945. The later is more in line with PR in other countries and are not required to be photographed or fingerprinted. The PR you and most here have is more like a long term visa (aka green card in the usa). Unlike Canada, the USA, even most EU countries you can get a spouse visa easily here then in a few years PR. Take Canada for example no actual spouse visa one most apply for immigration status which can take up to a year during which time your spouse must remain outside Canada, if already in Canada they cannot work or even leave the country during the process. No Japan does not treat PR the same as most western countries but then it also does not make living and working here as a spouse the getting PR as complicated as most western countries.

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

Antiquesaving

In Japan there are 2 types of PR one like most that arrived in the past few decades and one for those whose families have been here prior to 1945.

There is only one PR the current one is the Residents Card, first issued about 2012. You are no longer required to be fingerprinted. Don't know where you think people have different PR? Please provide a link?

2 ( +4 / -2 )

I think people do not understand the difference between Japan PR and most western countries. 2 different PR in Japan one those here before 1945 can do like the Japanese, the other PR cannot. The first type of PR is more similar to a PR in places like Canada, etc...

The other type of PR is very different. I came here I received a spouse visa very simple, if I was to try and move to Canada I could not take my wife until immigration process has been completed which can take up to a year would include a 10 year guarantee of support by me, a medical exam etc... if already in Canada she could not work until the process and immigrant status is given cannot leave the country either. Japan make it easy for spouses to live here and even get PR but Japan's PR is not the same as most western countries PR which are full immigration procedure.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

@zichi

Special Permanent Resident (特別永住者, tokubetsueijūsha) is a resident of Japan with ancestry usually related to its former colonies, Korea or Taiwan, specifically when those countries were under Japanese colonial rule.

Look it up.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Not much explanation but, this

http://www.immi-moj.go.jp/english/tetuduki/tokubetu/shomeisho.html

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

@Kazuaki Shimazaki

There is not a counterpoint to my statement.

There is absolutely no difference in biological terms between humans.

How people behave and how governments treat them can be different but again, has no bearing on my previous comment.

The salient point is if there is an infection.

To be or not is the question.

And the answer is a period of quarantine and medical treatment if needed.

Now, this is doable and for a price very doable!

However, the inadequacies of the system in dealing with foreigners is the fly in the ointment.

We might as well be back in feudal times....

5 ( +5 / -0 )

A Special Permanent Resident (特別永住者, tokubetsueijūsha) for people who were former subjects of the Empire but that was abolished at the end of the war. In 2018, about 320,000 people. Can't vote but have more rights than PR's including being able to travel under the current Covid-19 restrictions. This happened because the Koreans and Chinese refused to take citizenship.

"Japan one those here before 1945 "

Chinese and Koreans who were forced transported here and then refused to return home.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

"Japan doesn't care about International law."

Nothing to do with International Law.

Citizens have the RIGHT to leave their won countries; they cannot be stopped from leaving, but can be denied entry by the a foreign country they intend to enter.

Citizens have the RIGHT to enter their own country; they cannot be stopped.

Foreigners have no right to demand entry in a country of their habitual residence.

This the Law.

Everywhere.

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

We may at least suspect the cumulative effects of different habits.

As such, we may provisionally predict that an American is much more likely to catch it during his stay in America.

@Kazuaki, this is some seriously stretched logic. We could just as easily argue that an American returning to America will be more likely to stay with relatives, not travel much, and not be exposed much to other people, whereas a Japanese national is more likely to do touristy things and be among big crowds, and thus be much more likely to catch it.

It is far more logical to treat both of these people the same way when discussing their ability to leave Japan, enter the US, and return to Japan. Either they both have free entry, or they both have quarantine when they return, or they both can't return at all. No different treatment depending on passport color.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

@zichi

You said there wasn't 2 type of PR and I pointed out there are.

Go to immigration and see the rules Special PR have far more exemptions than standard PR. I am not going to do the work for you. Then go to Canada, USA, UK Australia, etc.. immigration sites look up the procedures just yo get a spouse visa and how long it takes, look up how long they are valid for before then having to go through the even longer more complicated immigration process to get PR (aka landed immigrant) status. Did any of us have to go through that in Japan? I was never ask to provide a police background check nor was I ask to take a medical exam, etc..

Japan's PR is in no way equal to that of PR in most other countries. If you want that equality then get Japanese citizenship they have made doing so much easier. But until Japan has the equal spouse PR requirements as western countries (way longer and complicated process) we cannot expect it to be the same.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

Antiquesaving, I do have special circumstances to travel home. But they want me to sign a form stating no guarantee of re-entry. And the MOFA site clearly states that after 3rd April nobody is deemed to have special circumstances to travel and return.

A lot of posts from you today but you don't seem to be able to answer the simple question. Why is Japan permitting citizens (people with a Japanese residential address paying Japanese taxes) free movement, but not permitting Japan taxpayers with a Japan residential address but with non-Japanese passports? Its a simple question. What constitutes the difference because of passport covers? Especially when Japan is the only G7 nation to do this.

A lot of posts from you today defending life in Japan, but that's not the question here, the question is above.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

@TigersTokyoDome

I think I made it quite clear but I will repeat as it seems some cannot grasp a simple concept.

Japan would if it could like most countries with virus related travel restrictions stop Japanese from leaving possibly even returning but the constitution makes doing that impossible, no different than most other western countries.

Next our visa and PR status are in no way equal to most if not all western countries. It does not take up to a year in Japan to get a spouse visa not do we need to provide police background check from our country, our spouse does not need to proved proof they can support us, we do not need to go for medical screening, etc.. The PR process is no different in Japan it is a simple procedure as with western countries it is long complicated and requires far more documents again medical examination, guarantee of support (10 years in Canada) and is called landed immigrant. Far from the same thing.

If you want the same PR as the rest of the G7 then fine have Japan adopt the same rules for getting PR here. I suspect many with PR now would not pass such stricter rules.

As I pointed out a simple example I applied for a spouse visa for Japan it took 2 weeks, if I try moving back to Canada I need a spouse visa (aka landed immigrant status) for my wife. The minimum time would be 6 months to a year, she could not join Menon Canada and it already there by some chance she is not permitted to work or leave the country until her residency is approved. If you want the same as the others then accept the same long complicated procedures

-7 ( +1 / -8 )

@ThonTaddeo Today 06:00 pm JST

We could just as easily argue that an American returning to America will be more likely to stay with relatives, not travel much, and not be exposed much to other people, whereas a Japanese national is more likely to do touristy things and be among big crowds, and thus be much more likely to catch it.

Well, it is not impossible, but your proposition is entirely hypothetical, while mine is backed at least superficially by statistics. Which do you think will go down better in a governmental meeting?

Besides, I'm sure many, many Americans are now "staying with relatives" (or family), traveling less and minimizing exposure (by their standards) with other people. Is it helping? The statistics suggest, at least not enough.

It is far more logical to treat both of these people the same way when discussing their ability to leave Japan, enter the US, and return to Japan.

It may be "fairer", or "better", but "more logical"? Even though they have a different legal status?

Robert SchraderToday 03:07 pm JST

@Kazuaki Shimazaki

But if all returnees need to take a PCR test and spend 14 days in quarantine, why should their country of travel origin matter? If you required a second negative PCR test before leaving quarantine, this would decrease the statistical risk almost to zero.

False positives and negatives, for one, which means the base chance does matter. Also, you might want to note the words "self quarantine". Which means rightly or wrongly, they are mostly trusting the guy to actually do it for society's sake.

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/video/2020/apr/28/who-is-behind-the-us-protests-against-coronavirus-lockdown-video-explainer

While anti-discrimination involves some wilful blindness of statistical differences, is it not burying one's head too deeply in the sand to just pretend the probability that the quarantine would be followed is really going to be bearably close?

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

Antiquesaving, the simple concept is, why as residents and taxpayers and spouses and permanent residents, we do not fall under the same constitution? Surely we do if we have been accepted here and pay their taxes? By respecting Japanese citizens with the constitution why then disrespect non-Japanese residents? That's a very simple concept.

The rest of your points are untrue unfortunately. I have been waiting 9 months now for my new permanent residency. They informed me it could take over a year. Immigration used to be much kinder in Tokyo 20 years ago, before Abe's administration.

But we are getting away from the point here. This is not about how efficient the visa office is or background checks, that has no bearing whatsoever on what is a medical and health topic. This is a health question - what proof is there that a Japan passport cover is more immune than another non-Japanese passport cover?

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Discrimination must go away. If not. Japan and good Japanese will be treated the same in the rest of the world.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

@TigersTokyoDome

can you give me a country where PR or immigrants have the same status under that countries constitution? As far as I know not Canada, not the USA, not UK, not Australia, etc...

If you know a country please let us know.

As often stated in Canada and the usa by their government adds citizenship has its benefits.

As I have said want the same become a citizen. Landed immigrants in Canada pay all the same taxes, etc.. but are not permitted to vote, can be expelled if warranted, etc.. they do not have the same constitutional right as citizens if they did what would be the point of becoming a citizen.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

Antique, it is a medical question. It is not related to our passport covers or visas. Explain how a Japanese citizen re-entering is more immune than a non-Japanese resident re-entering. We are not tourists either. Or Olympic athletes.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

@TigersTokyoDome

seriously is it that difficult to understand that Japan cannot stop its citizens from coming or going? How hard is that to grasp?

I am certain if it could it would, it can minimise the number of travelers by blocking those they can and that means all non citizens regardless of status.

In the rest of the world the lockdown was legally binding enforced by the law.

In Japan it was a request because the constitution does not let the government impose such restrictions

Why is that all so hard to understand, we are not citizens and therefore are not afforded the same protections or liberties. No different than any other country.

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

tigers:

Thank you ACCJ. Does the British Consulate have any comment.?

I doubt it. The UK lets other countries walk over it like a mat and certainly hasn't got its citizens in its best interest.

strangerland:

The Japanese passport is way better than many peoples home citizenships.

Compared to the average African country or a developing country, yes. But certainly not, when compared to other G7 countries. And other countries should not be offering citizenship to Japanese unless they're asked to renounce their Japanese citizenship officially.

Here is a fun fact. If you are a Permanent Resistant of Japan you must pay taxes to any money made abroad just like a Japanese citizen.

If I were earning money abroad (which I'm not!), it's got nothing to do with the government here. You'd be a fool for having to pay taxes twice. It's funny how the Japanese government is so concerned about us when it comes to squeezing every drop of money and taxes out of us, and yet when it comes to equal rights, and dare I say it, local elections, they're not interested.

Antiquesaving:

can you give me a country where PR or immigrants have the same status under that countries constitution? As far as I know not Canada, not the USA, not UK, not Australia, etc...

If you know a country please let us know.

Hong Kong. PR and HKSAR Chinese nationals (the vast majority of HKers) go through the same immigration gates at the airport. You only need to put your HKID card in the machine. You don't need your passport or even interact with an officer.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

"can you give me a country where PR or immigrants have the same status under that countries constitution? As far as I know not Canada, not the USA, not UK, not Australia, etc...

If you know a country please let us know."

He can't because there's no such place.

Foreigners complaining the're being treated differently form nationals.

Only on JT!

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

N Korea is actually the only country exerting total control over its citizens right to move.

That includes moving from one part of town to the other.

From one residence to the next.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

@Pukey2

i said country unless things changed Hong Kong is part of China. So please give a country.

As for paying taxes on world wide income Japan is not the only country to do so, USA being one example. But the idea one has to pay double taxes is a false one. If you for some reason you earn money in another country and pay taxes there you are not taxed in Japan on the that part, the details are complicated but a simple way of putting it is they only tax what is not taxes. So any earnings I make in Canada if I don't pay taxes ion it to Canada I must pay taxes on it in Japan if I pay taxes on it in Canada their kava formula and I may or may not pay some taxes in Japan but must declare it, if not one faces criminal charges and after conviction prison followed by deportation.

As for it having nothing to do with the Japanese government, depending on the country you are from in recent years agreements have been signed so that these countries can check earnings to see if someone had paid or earned in the other country. My country and Japan has such and agreement.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

"The Japanese passport is way better than many peoples home citizenships.

Compared to the average African country or a developing country, yes. But certainly not, when compared to other G7 countries."

Well, the Japanese passport is ranked no 1 in the World, since 2018.

Go check the Henley's index.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

Antiquesaving

@zichi

You said there wasn't 2 type of PR and I pointed out there are.

Yes I was incorrect. The Chinese and Koreans are a special group forced to come here during the war and refusing to take Japanese citizen which they can do at anytime and their children mainly apply for.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

In 2016, there were 727,111 people with PR. 338,950 people with special PR.

https://resources.realestate.co.jp/living/why-do-foreigners-come-to-live-in-japan-breakdown-by-visa-status/

2 ( +3 / -1 )

A brother has lived in New York for 30 years, married but uses a Green Card. His travel isn't restricted anymore than Americans.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

@zichi

Ask your brother the process he had though to get his green card.

I know the procedures 30 years ago and today.

Here is how to get a Japanese spouse visa get married register the marriage get a copy of the kosekitohon got to immigration fill in application add a few photos of your spouse and you at wedding, etc.. wait 2 weeks. Done.

PR in Japan as a splice not much more but police check will be done and income checked but relatively not much more takes a bit longer seen 3 months seen up to a year. USA, Canada, etc.. require months up to a year just circa basic spouse visa (unless they changed Canada does not give spouse visa and you need to sponsor your spouse for immigrant status) either way it take 6 months toga year they cannot enter the country must provide police checks, medical checks, interviews, etc..

Far far different and complicated procedure. So yes under such difficult conditions to get a green card as a spouse etc.. they can afford to give more rights especially since the goal is to get these people to eventually become citizens.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Just the tip of a long-standing, 'double standard' iceberg.

While the Japanese government is scheming of ways to lure tourists back to Japan, I am not allowed to leave Japan for tourism without drastic consequences.

Same old, same old.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Antiquesaving

@zichi

Ask your brother the process he had though to get his green card.

I don't need to ask him. We have a large American family including my mother who had dual nationality British-American. He's a sound engineer and musician. He applied for his Green card from the UK and received it in less than one year.

I arrived 30 years ago on a spouse visa and received my PR after about 6 years. Being an artist and had no problems with it.

Here is how to get a Japanese spouse visa get married register the marriage get a copy of the kosekitohon got to immigration fill in application add a few photos of your spouse and you at wedding, etc.. wait 2 weeks. Done.

I didn't do any of that. We registered our wedding at the Japanese Embassy in London. I applied for a spouse visa there. I didn't submit any photos.

As for double taxation tax treaties prevent that from happening. You only pay tax in one country, usually the one you live. I get money from America but only pay tax once.

But getting a spouse visa for my Japanese wife to enter the UK is now beyond our reach. We can't fulfill the requirements. Costs £1,523, a crazy amount of money. I would have to obtain an Irish passport and enter the UK that way.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

@zichi

Ok is see mother dual makes it much easier. I did the same as you for spouse visa took 2 weeks. Also 30 years ago. Divorced single father if Japanese national so no PR would be issued just long term visa married again second time was in Japan this time registered city, the kosekitohon and the procedures I listed to get spouse visa. As far as I know it is much easier to register and get spouse visa outside Japan. And if wondering I change from long term to spouse because my children reached adult status and as I said no PR because a single father it takes way more requirements than spouse. I could not return to Canada due to my children being refused under Canada's unilateral interpretation of the Hague accord. So I stayed now as with you the rules and cost make it far to much to bother trying to go to Canada. I do return now when I can to check on my parents but as with all those complaining here, I cannot now, they understand and even Igbo did I would have to find a place to self isolate or face legal consequences. So going there 2 weeks isolation returning if I can 2 week isolation. It had better be one long trip to spend 4 week in isolation.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

antiquesaving:

i said country unless things changed Hong Kong is part of China. So please give a country.

For immigration purposes, HK is separate from mainland China, but nice try.

Travelling between the two is classified as international travel, not domestic. Try using a mainland Chinese passport in the Hong Kong line at Chek Lap Kok Airport and see how far you get.

So, I gave you an example where PR and locals are treated the same for immigration purposes at the airport, and you chose to ignore it.

My country and Japan has such and agreement.

Well, good for you.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Let's face it, if one person on a plane has coronavirus and sneezes, or coughs, the recirculated air will soon ensure that every passenger is breathing the virus in. Therefore, any air passenger arriving from a coronavirus infected nation is a threat to Japan. So, even people who left Japan before the country they traveled to was placed on the list of restricted countries shouldn't be allowed to return yet.

I could have gone back to the U.K in my end of March break but it had been utterly obvious since January that there was a pandemic underway and borders were going to start closing. So I stayed in Japan. And I am glad I did. I would much rather be here than trapped in the U.K for all this time. I'm no genius so if I could see that borders were going to close then those who chose to travel should have too. They should face the consequences of their actions rather than be allowed to bring coronavirus with them into Japan.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

As the U.S. abandons a restriction that would have prevented many international students from traveling between their home countries and the U.S., Japan unfortunately continues its restriction on the movements of foreign national permanent residents.

The big difference is that the U.S case was widely reported by all T.V stations, whereas the PR case here hasn't been reported thus most Japanese don't know of it.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

antiquesaving:

can you give me a country where PR or immigrants have the same status under that countries constitution?

I'm not sure but maybe you can also tell me - how about Irish and UK citizens? Is there not a special treaty between these two independent countries?

3 ( +4 / -1 )

@Pukey2

really pulling at straws aren't you, guess you haven't seen the news lately regarding Hong Kong, you are going to try and claim China and Hong Kong are not the same country, really! Nice try.

If the UK and Ireland have some sort of agreement I don't know but if they do it could have something to do with Ireland being part of the UK for a long time before independence. But last I heard with brexit they were worried that they would again have to return to border checks and passports.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

@Asiaman7

I am not sure you have seen the USA news lately but most international students are now in a panic in the USA. Most schools will not be returning to in person classes and the USA government has made the decision that in international students do not attend on campus in person classes they lose their visas leaving most in the position of finding a new school by this week with on campus classes or leaving by the end of the month.

Regarless if they can even get a flight back home. As far as I know Japan auto extended visas to all that cannot go home until it is safe or permitted to travel.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Japan has just no understanding of the meaning of a legal residence by international standards.

Even though thousands of Japanese expatriates enjoy it while leaving abroad.

Japan cannot make the difference between residence and citizenship. So shameful.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Foreign residents pay taxes just like Japanese citizens.

Some Japanese citizens travel way more than foreign residents (e.g. business people).

There's no reason (economic or otherwise) why foreign residents cannot leave the country, come back and go thru PCR testing just like Japanese citizens do and I bet the majority only go once or twice a year to see their relatives.

This is sending a clear message to future workers who are thinking about coming to Japan.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

@Open Minded

I have pointed out the vast difference between PR in Japan and PR in most western countries several times, the legal process the administration process are vastly different.

It breaks down to one being seen as temporary and one being far stricter with the eventually goal of becoming a citizen.

Few coming to Japan getting PR ever plan on taking citizen ship even as the government of Japan has made PR more difficult it has tried making becoming a citizen more simple with few takers. As for expat Japanese in other countries, this is a wide scope again those that went through the long immigration process all the way to working visa holders mostly temporary (often for Japanese companies) residence. The former has gone through a long immigration process and is entitled to all the protection and rights that instills the later has no more rights or protection than any expat working or living in Japan with a visa or non special status PR.

If one day Japan changes its system to that of countries like the USA, Canada Australia, etc.. then possibly PR rights will change but the day Japan does that people will jump up and down complaining at how difficult it is to get a spouse visa or PR (immigrant status). As I pointed out getting a spouse visa in Japan is a quick simple easy process doing the same for Canada, USA, UK, etc.. is a long complicated process often leading to couples being separated for months even years while it is being processed. I was offered a job in Canada but was told by the embassy that my Japanese wife would not be let in until she got her immigration papers and that would take at least 6 month to a year and cost quite a bit on money. That is why the subject of family reunification is such a big subject and problem in Canada and many western countries with spouses and children separated sometimes for years.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

@pepelepew

i am willing to bet few Japanese are even going anywhere and if they are then it is to live or study.

Any foreigners leaving Japan to go home had better really want to go because even if they could it will Neva long long trip just like the Japanese.

Aa far as I understand if a Japanese foe to an EU country that now permits it, they will have to self isolate 2 weeks they do the same upon returning to Japan so any trip even if we could leave and return we will spend 4 weeks in isolation.

Knowing this I do not think many are going to go just for business trips or vacation.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

Japanese travel to the UK/EU will only be allowed if Japan also lifts its travel restrictions.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I am presently acting as proxy contact a legal representative for a Japanese friend whose mother in now hospitalised. He is working in the EU earlier I sent him an email asking if now it was possible for him to return to Japan see his mother and go back to the EU country he is in.

He just replied saying yes it was possible but he cannot because he cannot get the needed time off to do so.

As I suspected he could not see his mother until he finished 2 weeks of self isolation then on returning to the country he works in he would again have to do the same.

So seeing she is not in any danger for the moment he cannot risk losing his job at this time.

So unless anyone here is willing to go through 4 weeks isolation the whole thing is not a real problem. Unless you are American which means you will probably ignore the rules not self isolate once in the USA just like the USA military did here and the American did in Canada.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

A Japanese citizen should file a lawsuit to challenge this if there is a PR spouse affected.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

@Zichi

Japanese travel to the UK/EU will only be allowed if Japan also lifts its travel restrictions.

Japanese can freely travel to the UK and walk right through, without delay as there are few crowds.

There are no restrictions;I was informed of this by an acquaintance who entered via Heathrow Airport two weeks ago.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

kurisupisu

@ZichI

Japanese can freely travel to the UK and walk right through, without delay as there are few crowds.

There are no restrictions;I was informed of this by an acquaintance who entered via Heathrow Airport two weeks ago

yes, I think you are correct. The UK is also expecting Japan to lift the restrictions for UK travellers. I think it’s also the same with the EU.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Great.... so I can leave the Country, but cant return to my home, so will be left homeless... nice one Japan.

Japan really seriously needs to think how it treats its permanent residents - tax us to hell and back, but doesnt give us representation. This is not a democracy.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

All the false indignation!

@mmwkdw

Do you have any real plans to travel and to where seeing all places now require 2 week isolation and if you could return 2 more weeks after returning. If you have all that extra time and money then it is highly unlikely you would end up homeless.

Better hope Japan doesn't rethink PR because they could decide to do like the west and make getting it far far far more strict, complicated, expensive, and longer process same for a spouse visa so easy here look and see what is needed and how long it take in other western countries.

Again with having to isolate 2 weeks in the other country and again on returning to Japan, I highly doubt any Japanese traveling are doing it for travel to just visit family or vacation. If there actually are any they are going to the other countries for long term work or study and will not return unless they really have to.

Again anyone traveling now needs to be able to afford the time and money to isolate for 4 weeks, how many of you complaining are ready to do that?

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Its just a question to think about but if you look around the world and see which countries are wearing masks almost uniformly and which aren't, whom do you trust to actually self-quarantine? Just honestly think about it.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

antiquesaving:

Few coming to Japan getting PR ever plan on taking citizen ship

You could say the same thing about Hong Kong. You can't get a HKSAR passport unless you renounce your other citizenship, and many aren't willing to do that, especially if they come from western countries. Of course, this doesn't apply to those who were born as HKSAR nationals.

Aa far as I understand if a Japanese foe to an EU country that now permits it, they will have to self isolate 2 weeks

Not if they are going to the UK, as far as I know. Once again, Japan doesn't understand the word reciprocity.

It just seems like you're trying to make excuses for the way the Japanese government views and treats PRs.

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kurisupisu:

Japanese can freely travel to the UK and walk right through, without delay as there are few crowds.

Right through the UK/EU queue, might I add. Not in the gaijin queue.

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I think the government will quite rightly ignore this request for the time being, given the current spike. It's really not that hard to apply for re-entry if it's an urgent need to travel, otherwise you shouldn't be going anywhere anyway.

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@Pukey2

Again with Hong Kong! Not not not not not not not a country! Wow!

How hard is it for you to understand it was returned to China the end!

If the UK lest Japanese go there now that was its choice Japan has no obligation to do the same and why do you think it does?

Japan would rather no one travel in and out of the country, the government has stated that many times. So UK or EU opening to Japanese travelers is not Japan's decision and I suspect that the government advising people not to go means it is not to happy about it.

And again who do you think is traveling, tourist???

On arrival in the UK travelers must isolate for 14 days (UK gov website just checked) we know when they return they must do the same here that is one month of isolation, no one in their right mind is just traveling for pleasure, vacation or a family visit unless they have a lot of time to waste and money to waste!

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