TOKYO: The Japanese government on Saturday ended its border control measures linked to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Travelers entering the country will no longer be required to present either a vaccination certificate for three doses of COVID-19 vaccine or a negative result of a COVID-19 test taken within 72 hours prior to departure.
Japanese Ambassador to Saudi Arabia IWAI Fumio thanked God via his social media in Arabic.
“It means that the situation returns to what it was before the spread of Corona, thank God.”
خبر بغاية الأهمية للمسافرين إلى اليابان …أعلنت حكومة اليابان اليوم رفع جميع الإجراءات الاحترازية المتعلقة بجائحة كورونا عند دخولكم إلى اليابان إبتداءً من تاريخ ٢٩ أبريل. يعني أن الوضع يعود إلى ما كان عليه قبل انتشار كورونا الحمدلله.— Iwai Fumio🇯🇵 (@FumioIwai) April 28, 2023
The government initially planned to lift the border measures on May 8, when it is set to lower the classification of COVID-19 under the infectious disease law.
The earlier lifting of the measures is aimed at allowing people to “smoothly return home after traveling overseas during the Golden Week holiday period” from Saturday, Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirokazu Matsuno said at a press conference.
Japan also ended random COVID-19 testing for around 20 pct of people arriving from mainland China.
Meanwhile, Japan will continue COVID-19 testing for those entering the country with symptoms such as fever and coughing and require them to be quarantined if their test results are positive.
To prevent the influx of new infectious diseases, the government will introduce a system to conduct genome analysis for those with symptoms on a voluntary basis at five major airports starting May 8. The five are Tokyo’s Haneda Airport, Narita International Airport, Kansai International Airport, Chubu Centrair International Airport and Fukuoka Airport.
Since the rapid spread of COVID-19 in 2020, Japan has once rejected foreign visitors who had recently stayed in certain countries or regions and required travelers to be quarantined at designated places for a certain period after entering the country.
Also on May 8, the government will abolish its novel coronavirus response headquarters and its basic response guidelines.
“Measures against COVID-19 will now be based on voluntary efforts by individuals,” economic revitalization minister Shigeyuki Goto said at a press conference.
Meanwhile, Goto noted that the government’s expert panel on COVID-19 measures will “continue to exist for the time being.”