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China cuts quarantine for overseas travelers, easing Covid controls


For greater than two years, overseas travelers have needed to quarantine upon arrival in China due to Covid restrictions. Pictured here at Beijing International Airport on June 18, 2022, are passengers waiting to be taken to quarantine-designated destinations.

Leo Ramirez | Afp | Getty Images

BEIJING — China cut the quarantine period for international travelers on Tuesday, a giant step toward loosening Covid controls which have persevered for greater than two years.

Overseas travelers will only have to quarantine at a centralized facility, reminiscent of a hotel, for seven days upon arrival in mainland China, the National Health Commission announced Tuesday. Travelers might want to spend three additional days at home before they will enterprise out, the commission said.

Previously, overseas arrivals in China typically needed to spend 14 to 21 days in centralized quarantine, depending on town of entry and destination inside the country.

Tuesday’s announcement also said that inside China, close contacts of confirmed Covid cases would likewise only have to spend seven days in centralized quarantine, followed by three days of health monitoring at home.

Previously, Covid-related isolation requirements tended to last for a minimum of 14 days.

Mainland China reported for Monday one confirmed Covid case with symptoms — within the southern province of Guangdong — and 21 cases with no symptoms. The cities of Beijing and Shanghai reported none in either category.

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In the previous couple of months, some cities began to scale back the length of mandatory isolation.

The capital city of Beijing in early May had required 10 days in centralized quarantine and 7 days at home, down from 14 days of centralized quarantine.

China began to tighten its borders in late March 2020 as Covid-19 began to return under control domestically while spreading rapidly overseas. Covid-19 first emerged in late 2019 within the Chinese city of Wuhan.

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