China eases COVID controls, slashed quarantine time for international travelers

China slashed the quarantine time for international travelers by half on Tuesday, big step toward easing Covid controls that have persisted for more than two years.

National Health Commission announced that overseas travelers will only need to quarantine at a centralized facility, such as a hotel, for seven days upon arrival in mainland China.Travelers will need to spend three additional days at home before they can venture out.

While the rest of the globe struggles to cope with the virus, China continues to implement rigorous anti-COVID measures, which has negatively impacted its economy, irritated businesses, and enraged many of the millions of people affected by the draconian lockdowns in cities like Shanghai.

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Health officials claim that China has gradually loosened restrictions on cross-border travel because the shorter Omicron variant incubation period allows for a change in the quarantine period.

And earlier this month, China’s aviation regulator said it had been in touch with some countries to steadily increase flight numbers in the second half of 2022.

In the last few months, some cities began to reduce the length of mandatory isolation.

The capital city of Beijing in early May had required 10 days in centralized quarantine and seven days at home, down from 14 days of centralized quarantine.

The new quarantine rules were welcomed by American, British and European business lobby groups in China.

 

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The British Chamber of Commerce in China revealed that “It will hopefully work towards increasing business exchanges and stemming the outflow of international talent, some of whom are coming up to having had three years of separation from family and friends overseas.” 

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