Taiwan, latest Asian country to reconnect and drop quarantine rules

  • China Airlines Cargo Boeing 747-409(F) (2)
    Chinese airlines

    IATA/ICAO code:
    IC/CAL

    Airline type:
    Full service carrier

    Hub(s):
    Tao Yuan International Airport

    Year of foundation:
    1959

    Alliance:
    SkyTeam

    Air group:
    China Airlines Group

    CEO:
    Hsieh Shih-Chen

    Country:
    Republic of China
  • /wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2021/04/EVA-Air-Boeing-777-35EER-B-16707-1000x667.jpg
    Eva air

    IATA/ICAO code:
    BR/EVA

    Airline type:
    Full service carrier

    Hub(s):
    Tao Yuan International Airport

    Year of foundation:
    1989

    Alliance:
    star alliance

    CEO:
    Chen Hsien-Hung

    Country:
    Republic of China

In Asia’s flurry of activity to reopen tourism, the Republic of China (Taiwan) saw the light and jumped aboard the global aviation bandwagon. At the weekend, it joined similar announcements from Japan and Hong Kong, leaving only two Asian markets clinging to their COVID border closure policies, China and North Korea.


Taiwanese airlines have the capacity

Major Taiwanese airlines, such as EVA Air, will deploy their jumbo jets once entry restrictions are lifted. Photo: Vincenzo Pace I simply fly

The reopening of the borders and the establishment of the welcome mat for tourists will be a tonic for the country’s two main airlines, China Airlines and EVA Air. The two have 184 planes, of which 36, or 20%, are listed as inactive on the ch-aviation.com database, although most of their widebodies are working. China Airlines has 18 Airbus A330-300s and 13 A350-900s plus 10 Boeing B777-300ERs in the air, with just five jumbo jets idle. EVA Air has 11 A330s, 34 B777s and 10 B787s in service, with just one A330-200 idle.

SIMPLEFLYING VIDEO OF THE DAY

The new rules are here

Taiwan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs released a statement indicating that visa-free travel to Taiwan will be fully restored from September 29 for nationals of eligible countries to engage in permit-free activities. These activities include visiting relatives, sightseeing, business, social events, visiting exhibitions and international exchanges. The ministry said the changes were made following an announcement from the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC), the cabinet-level government body responsible for the measures.

From midnight on September 29, the weekly cap on arrivals will increase from 50,000 to 60,000, with plans to raise it to 150,000. In addition, the saliva PCR test on arrival for inbound travelers will be removed and replaced by rapid antigen tests. Visitors will still have to undergo three days of quarantine at the hotel, followed by four days of self-monitoring when they are supposed to avoid crowded places. Taiwan plans to end mandatory quarantine next month and reconnect its economy to the world after more than two and a half years of restrictions, according to Nikkei Asia.

Big changes planned next month

The report quotes Taiwanese Prime Minister Su Tseng-chang as saying the government aims to end the measures around October 13. Cabinet spokesman Lo Ping-cheng said in a briefing on Thursday that the government will monitor the situation for another week and plans to announce the easing two weeks ahead of the planned implementation. This means the new rules, including lifting the quarantine for tourists and lifting the ban on tour groups, would come into effect around October 13, assuming infections remain at acceptable levels this week. Lo added that the new measures will be,

“enable the public to fully regain a normal life [and] Taiwan will open its doors to welcome tourists again and all industries to be more active and prosperous. This is the last mile of our fight against the pandemic.”

In addition to wanting to revive tourism, there is some logic behind Taiwan’s decision to abandon pandemic-era restrictions. On September 21, 46,902 people tested positive for COVID with 39 deaths, a sharp drop from May when daily infections topped 94,000 due to the Omicron variant.

How long will China maintain its isolationist strategy to fight COVID?

Source: Nikkei Asia

About Jun Quentin

Check Also

Crime in Burnaby: Man convicted in random transit attacks

Rainier Jesse Azucena, 35, was sentenced to parole and three years probation after pleading guilty …