China is a country in East Asia, which has a population of 1.4 billion people. It is slightly ahead of India in population.
COVID-19 cases continue to rise in China
It’s been just over a week since China’s strict “zero-Covid” policies were eased, and the number of COVID-19 cases continues to climb. In the past week, 4,536 new cases were reported in the country. This is the highest number of daily infections since the start of the outbreak in Wuhan, in early 2020.
Experts predict a large wave of infections will hit China, with an estimated one million people dying in the next few months. China’s healthcare system is already under enormous strain. As more and more people are sick, hospitals are under pressure to provide treatment and to care for the infected.
The latest outbreak is especially severe in Jilin province, which is located in northeastern China. More than half of the total infections have been reported there.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), there is an absence of accurate information about the actual toll of the virus. However, it is feared that the death toll could be greater than previously thought.
COVID-19 testing will no longer be required in high-risk areas
As the world continues to grapple with the rise of COVID-19, the Chinese government announced that it will no longer require testing for those living in high-risk regions. While the country has maintained a zero-COVID policy for the past three years, it has been criticized for its restrictive nature.
For the past year, the Chinese health authority has been urging localities to overcome bureaucracy and add extra measures to prevent the spread of the virus. The government announced its intention to loosen its policy after the November protests.
Aside from the elimination of testing requirements, the Chinese government has also changed its travel restrictions. Foreign nationals with a valid visa can now enter China. In addition, those travelling from one province to another will no longer need to test on arrival.
Fast-track program to travel to China
If you’re looking for the easiest way to travel to China, the US-China fast-track program may be your best bet. This program provides US companies with a reliable channel for executives and technical personnel to travel to the country. However, before you can take advantage of this service, you must first meet certain requirements.
The fast-track program is available to US business executives and their family members, but the eligibility rules are specific. Applicants must demonstrate an urgent need to travel to China, and their company must have an impact on the country’s economy.
Travelers who qualify for the program will be given a PU letter, or personal invitation, from local Chinese authorities. Applicants must then apply for visas through an overseas Chinese embassy, or their own local Chinese consulate.
Quarantine requirements for inbound travelers
China’s National Health Commission recently announced changes to the country’s inbound quarantine requirements. These changes are expected to come into effect on January 8th.
Quarantine requirements for international arrivals have been reduced to five days in a designated facility. This is down from ten days. However, there will still be a requirement for a negative PCR test from within 48 hours before departure.
A change in the quarantine protocol is part of an overall loosening of COVID restrictions in China. The changes will begin on January 8. Previously, all travelers from overseas were required to quarantine for a period of eight days. In some cases, these periods extended to twenty days.
The new rules also include restrictions for those traveling from high-risk and medium-risk areas. These areas are generally restricted from travel to other Chinese provinces.
Exit bans on certain individuals
If you are considering traveling to China, it is a good idea to familiarize yourself with its rules of entry and exit. These regulations are aimed at deterring outbound tourism and keeping people within the country. In addition, travelers should wear face masks in public places.
An exit ban is essentially a government-imposed ban on a specific person. Aside from being a real-life inconvenience, the extrajudicial application of such a ban presents a major human rights concern.
For years, the Chinese Communist Party has used the exit ban to keep Americans in the country. The longest-running case is that of Chinese-American businessman Henry Cai. There are other cases, including the pregnant woman mentioned above.
Travel restrictions have been implemented in four major phases. First, there was the COVID-zero era. Next, there was the Omicron outbreak. This prompted the government to increase the quarantine length.