© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Travellers walk with their luggage at Beijing Capital International Airport, amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak in Beijing, China December 27, 2022. REUTERS/Tingshu Wang
(Reuters) – Authorities around the world are imposing or considering curbs on travellers from China as COVID-19 cases in the country surge following its relaxation of “zero-COVID” rules.
They cite a lack of information from China on variants and are concerned about a wave of infections. China has rejected criticism of its COVID data and said it expects future mutations to be potentially more transmissible but less severe.
Below is a list of regulations for travellers from China.
PLACES IMPOSING CURBS
The United States will impose mandatory COVID-19 tests on travellers from China beginning on Jan. 5. All air passengers aged two and older will require a negative result from a test no more than two days before departure from China, Hong Kong or Macau. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also said U.S. citizens should also reconsider travel to China, Hong Kong and Macau.
The UK will require a pre-departure negative COVID-19 test from passengers from China as of Jan. 5, the Department of Health said on Friday.
France will require travellers from China to provide a negative COVID test result less than 48 hours before departure.
From Jan. 1, France will also carry out random PCR COVID tests upon arrival on some travellers coming from China, a government official told reporters.
France has also urged all 26 other European Union member states to test Chinese travellers for COVID.
Travellers from China to Australia will need to submit a negative COVID-19 test from Jan. 5, Australian Health Minister Mark Butler said on Sunday.
The country has mandated a COVID-19 negative test report for travellers arriving from China, Hong Kong, Japan, South Korea and Thailand. Passengers from those countries will be quarantined if they show symptoms or test positive.
Air travellers to Canada from China must test negative for COVID-19 no more than two days before departure, Ottawa said.
Japan will require a negative COVID-19 test upon arrival for travellers from mainland China. Those who test positive will be required to quarantine for seven days. New border measures for China went into effect at midnight on Dec. 30. The government will also limit requests from airlines to increase flights to China.
Italy has ordered COVID-19 antigen swabs and virus sequencing for all travellers from China. Milan’s main airport, Malpensa, had already started testing passengers arriving from Beijing and Shanghai.
Spain will require a negative COVID-19 test or a full course of vaccination against the disease upon arrival for travellers from China.
Malaysia will screen all inbound travellers for fever and test wastewater from aircraft arriving from China for COVID-19.
Taiwan’s Central Epidemic Command Centre said all passengers on direct flights from China, as well as by boat at two offshore islands, will have to take PCR tests upon arrival, starting on Jan. 1.
South Korea will require travellers from China to provide negative COVID test results before departure, South Korea’s News1 news agency reported.
Morocco will impose a ban on people arriving from China, whatever their nationality, from Jan. 3.
Qatar will require travellers arriving from China from Jan. 3 to provide a negative COVID-19 test result taken within 48 hours of departure, state news agency QNA said.
PLACES MONITORING SITUATION
The Philippines sees a need to intensify monitoring and implementation of border control for incoming individuals especially from China, Manila’s health ministry said.