quote of the day

It’s frustrating because we were in the middle of preparing to deal with strict self-quarantine measures and coronavirus testing on foreign students.


Kaori Hayashi, an executive vice president of the University of Tokyo. About 1,000 foreign students had been waiting to enter Japan to study at the university as of early November. However, the Japanese government's sudden decision to reimpose an entry ban on foreign travelers to keep the Omicron variant of the coronavirus at bay has caused confusion for businesspeople, foreign students and technical intern trainees.

© Asahi Shimbun

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Looking at the research projects of the UT it is believable that at least a few of the postgraduate students would be involved in projects involving measures against COVID, it would be a shame if any delay is related to the ban of foreign students delayed something useful that the university could have developed thanks to their help. Specially when other people are routinely given exceptions even if their contribution is just increasing profits for their companies.

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Is it any wonder the nation ranks so low in investment and people traveling abroad to study? A lot of people do, and want to, for sure, but it's far more for the experience of being in Japan than the education they can get.

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But this move was to be expected. Many people foresaw this. Think back to last year and the various stimulus measures to improve the economy - many people pointed out that it would come with even more force after the easing because people would lose their caution and many would say "and it's over". Add to that the erratic actions of our government, which, when the going gets tough, puts everything on the prefectures...

Or think of the promises about vaccinations, the bravado about how the virus will be "almost eradicated by the end of October" (ah come on, you get the point), etc. Suddenly no one remembers and everyone looks surprised.

But here it is just an old habit to be silent, not to ask questions, not to challenge illogical decisions, etc.

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has caused confusion for businesspeople, foreign students and technical intern trainees.

Unless they have already had visas issued and flights booked, they cannot enter the country for at least one month.

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