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Kishida says no schedule yet for allowing entry of tourists

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Last night my wife and I took a late night stroll through Asakusa.

It is very sad to see all the places that are now closed,

Tenant wanted signs all over the place.

I have lived and worked near Asakusa for over 30 years, ground floor commercial space was always in very short supply but now there are plenty with some in prime locations that have been vacant looking for tenants for several months.

It isn't locals or domestic travel that is going to revive businesses and jobs in the area, it is foreign tourists.

23 ( +27 / -4 )

This decision will come after the summer elections.

14 ( +25 / -11 )

To encourage vaccinations, the metropolitan government has begun offering coupons and prizes to fully vaccinated individuals, including giving a higher chance to win in a lottery to see twin giant pandas born last year at the Ueno Zoological Gardens.

I'm sure those struggling financially are thinking, 'Great! I get to see pandas if I play pin cushion for the third time!'. Ridiculous. Nobody cares about pandas, prizes, and coupons. They care about keeping their businesses afloat, paying rent on time, and putting food on the table. You want people to get boosted? Give them a cash handout.

14 ( +19 / -5 )

Koike making no sense - getting the vaccine doesn’t break the COVID chain. I know people who have had 3 shots and still got the virus. Yes, the vaccine helped them recover super fast, but stop spouting nonsense that it “breaks the Covid infection chain.”

13 ( +27 / -14 )

Wait a minute, if I’m vaccinated, I get to see pandas????

maybe I had the wrong stance all along…

12 ( +18 / -6 )

I have been coming and going to Japan for over thirty years now (my wife is Japanese) and we always enjoy eating out at a beautiful Japanese sashimi restaurant near Asakusa where my wife's uncle is the owner manager. It's a large restaurant and he is a master chef, dedicating his whole life to the beautiful art of sashimi presentation. Due to border closures it was no longer viable to remain open, (a large percentage of the customers being foreign tourists) and as Antiquesaving says above, closure was the only financial option. He has now retired early, and the restaurant will never reopen. The border closures are an irritation to tourists, but a business death blow for local proprietors.

11 ( +13 / -2 )

This decision will come after the summer elections.

Good point! The LDP's electorate wouldn't be happy if borders opened too soon (or ever, in some cases).

10 ( +20 / -10 )

@N Knight

The article talks about tourists, you are on a business visa.

Pretty sure Australia is opening doors now to foreign tourists, our tourism industries would be glad for this. The fact Japan doesn’t have a set date to reopen to the world (for tourism) is mind boggling! Local operators must be suffering quite a lot as antiquesaving mentioned.

Haven’t been up there for 4 years now, would be great to get up by year end.

10 ( +10 / -0 )

Appears no rush for them. Maybe 2023, otherwise 2024, otherwise.... can kicking will continue.

7 ( +13 / -6 )

Why does Japan always seem to be far behind the rest of the world? If people are vaccinated and test negetive to a rapid test there is no reason they shouldn't be able to enter Japan.

6 ( +21 / -15 )

Only 25.6 percent of those in their 20s in Tokyo had received their third COVID-19 vaccine booster shots as of Tuesday, compared with 44.4 percent for the capital's entire population, according to the metropolitan government.

To encourage vaccinations....

The act as if boosters are an option people are not taking.

In Japan the booster is only available 7 months after the first 2 doses. In my city, healthy people under 60 did not start getting offered their vaccinations last year until Sept, and due to schedules I couldn't get mine until October, with the final dose on October 25. So that means I need to wait until May 25 to reach my 7 months and then be eligible for their discounts or be able to re-enter from abroad without quarantine.

Actually, they didn't finish the official vaccination distribution until late November in my city as well as across Japan, which means no boosters for them until late June!

I can not imagine Japan will allow foreign tourists until the booster is at least available to all citizens and residents.

5 ( +13 / -8 )

To encourage vaccinations, the metropolitan government has begun offering coupons and prizes to fully vaccinated individuals, including giving a higher chance to win in a lottery to see twin giant pandas born last year at the Ueno Zoological Gardens.

Wouldn't it be simpler, and cost saving as it cuts bureaucracy like a UBI, to give them each a hundred bucks like other nations have done.?

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Countries just hurting their own economies and many small businesses by not letting tourists travel to their countries.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

I arrived 2 weeks ago on a business visa as a foreign national.

Nothing changed at all on Friday.

Unless I am missing something.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Kyo wa heiwa dayo neToday  01:33 pm JST

You know when the cost of one small onion is ¥130 something is seriously wrong with the economy

Where do you live and shop, Ginza?

Just bought a bag of onions 6 medium size ¥199.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Making a decision after “looking at border control steps taken by other nations” = already open, is it that hard to type a search line in Google?

3 ( +4 / -1 )

including giving a higher chance to win in a lottery to see twin giant pandas born last year at the Ueno Zoological Gardens.

Woah! What a price! Lemme go get the vaxx an 10 boosters!

2 ( +9 / -7 )

@purple_depressed_bacon

That's because politicians think of their electorate as plebs easily destracted with shiny stuff. It's terribly condescending, but works with some consumer goods, so why not try it with cute pandas and lotteries?

2 ( +10 / -8 )

divindaToday  07:40 am JST

Great point!

My 27 year old son still hasn't received his vaccine papers here in our Tokyo ward because he was among the last in our ward to receive their voucher last year.

So he still isn't eligible to receive his booster until next month.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

BetachildToday  11:27 am JST

Making a decision after “looking at border control steps taken by other nations” = already open, is it that hard to type a search line in Google?

The real deciding factor is how the grannies and grandpas are going to vote in the next election, particularly the sort of dim-witted, racist hypochondriacs that tend to vote LDP.

2 ( +8 / -6 )

Tokyo Gov. Yuriko Koike stressed at a press conference the importance of younger people getting vaccinated to "break the chain of infection.”

Koike-san, did you overwork yourself as you are spouting nonsense again. Maybe better to take a rest. How is it possible that these idiots still do not understand?!

1 ( +21 / -20 )

a certain country will not allow tourists to enter japan from Russia, Belarus and China.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

business as usual,outcome as usual,i am not surprised at all.its completely against common sense but yes-we live in weird times.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Good try but I couldn't care any less about some pandas in a zoo. Also, they're forcing Moderna as a third shot and most have preference for Pfizer. The only places I found that offer Pfizer shots are reserved for kids.

And no. Like many said above, the vaccine does not break the chain of infections. Have friends who never got the shots and they got as sick or less as people I know that are "fully vaccinated."

0 ( +1 / -1 )

The only possible justification for keeping the borders closed is to protect foreign tourists from catching Covid from Japanese people.

0 ( +8 / -8 )

Great decision Kishida-chan! You must prevent all these millions of people dying all over Japan...

Oh wait I mean you must look decisive and anti-gaijin to get re-elected. Easy mistake to make.

-1 ( +10 / -11 )

Tokyo Gov. Yuriko Koike stressed at a press conference the importance of younger people getting vaccinated to "break the chain of infection."

I would argue, DON'T do it, because then the government will be forced to reconcile with the fact that they are wasting money.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Kishida hasn't noticed the border control steps taken by other nations ?

@ kenchi

If you get vaccinated you have a chance to win a viewing of the twin pandas.

Its not guaranteed.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Kishida said at a press conference, adding the government will make a judgment after looking at the COVID-19 infection situation and border control steps taken by other nations.

really? Because it seems like japan is the only ones being on ignorant to the rest of the world.

well, I guess he did say “look at” and not follow what all other countries are doing. Nope they gonna keep it behind the times and oblivious to what’s going on.

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

After all, Japan is an elderly-centered society. The elderly are afraid that the travel restrictions will be lifted and the virus will spread. And recently, the new cases have increased globally.

-3 ( +7 / -10 )

This is just a demonstration of xenophobia and intolerance. I only let business and students go. how disgusting to take advantage only. And you know what I'm not going to Japan in my life. I prefer to go to a country that welcomes me and is happy for my presence. ........ As Japan, you are beginning to have a very beautiful picture in the world

-3 ( +7 / -10 )

You know when the cost of one small onion is ¥130 something is seriously wrong with the economy.

I do admit how nice its been without a bunch of tourists and cruises .

nothing against foreigners.

But the prices have raised for everything so much and no stimulus funding.

Seems ridiculous that foreign tourists are blocked and more sanctions on the way.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

But Kishida has warned that Japan is seeing signs of a coronavirus resurgence, calling for the public to cooperate in stemming the spread by taking thorough prevention measures, getting tested for the virus and receiving COVID-19 vaccine booster shots as early as possible.

.....

Japan is a world of black comedy drama and the Japanese politicians are making up the script as they go along!

The LDP politicos and their entourages are regular voyagers to gaikoku without hindrance-no restrictions there.

Whilst doing so,

rules on distancing and mask wearing and conversing in loud voices are regularly flouted.

Yet, Japan is a country where the virus is prolific and mask wearing is ubiquitous but the spread is still ongoing

As usual there isn’t a shred of logic in many actions being taken by government but there are many Japanese being deprived of their livelihoods by lack of trade.

Not based on science,economic deprivation is the result

Japan is an outlier and its citizens are suffering

-5 ( +4 / -9 )

"But Kishida has warned that Japan is seeing signs of a coronavirus resurgence, calling for the public to cooperate in stemming the spread by taking thorough prevention measures, getting tested for the virus and receiving COVID-19 vaccine booster shots as early as possible."

Yes, and if that resurgence is happening despite not allowing foreigners in then, guess what... it's not because foreigners are coming in or out, it's because of domestic practice -- you know, not having a REAL SOE and just having "quasi" garbage, and not enforcing anything anyway. Or of lifting the quasi-state just before mass gatherings of cherry blossom viewers, and now talking about another GO-TO campaign!

I say ban Japanese travelers in reciprocation until they open up. If foreign students -- some of whom have been waiting for two years -- can't come in, don't allow Japanese students to go abroad, etc.

-6 ( +9 / -15 )

Anybody could be the prime minister of Japan with this much wisdom and originality.

Just has to be born in Japan after 1950, kiss a lot of bottoms in a party called LDP and there you go….

-6 ( +5 / -11 )

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