States around the world are imposing or considering imposing restrictions on travelers from China as the number of COVID-19 cases in the country has surged since the loosening of zero COVID rules, Reuters reported.
They cite a lack of information from China about the options and are concerned about the wave of infections. China has rejected criticism of its COVID data and said it expects future mutations to be potentially more contagious but less serious.
Specifically, the United States is introducing mandatory COVID-19 tests for travelers from China beginning Jan. 5. All air travelers two years of age or older will be required to test negative no more than two days before departure from China, Hong Kong or Macau. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has also said that U.S. citizens should also reconsider traveling to China, Hong Kong and Macau.
India also requires a negative COVID-19 test for travelers arriving from China, Hong Kong, Japan, South Korea and Thailand. Passengers from these countries will be quarantined if they develop symptoms or test positive.
Japan will require a negative COVID-19 test on arrival for travelers from mainland China. Those who test positive will be required to undergo a seven-day quarantine. The new border measures for China will go into effect at midnight on December 30. The government will also limit airline requests for more flights to China.
Italy is requiring COVID-19 antigen swabs and virus sequencing for all travelers from China. Milan's main airport, Malpensa, has already begun testing passengers arriving from Beijing and Shanghai. This measure is necessary to provide surveillance and identify possible variants of the virus in order to protect the Italian population, said Health Minister Orazio Schillaci.
Spanish Health Minister Carolina Darias said travelers from China will be required to test negative for COVID-19 or be fully vaccinated against the disease upon arrival in Spain.
Malaysia will test all incoming travelers for fever and effluent from planes arriving from China for COVID-19, Minister Zalihi Mustapha said in a statement.
South Korea will require travelers from China to submit negative test results for COVID.