Japan may ease non-resident foreigner entry ban in March - Kyodo News

(Reuters) - The Japanese government is considering easing an entry ban on non-resident foreigners in March, Kyodo news agency reported on Saturday, citing a source familiar with the matter.

It said Japan's current border restrictions, introduced at the end of November, would end on February 28 as scheduled, and the country could also relax the 3,500 cap on daily new entrants from overseas. Until November, up to 5,000 were allowed each day.

Japan adopted some of the strictest border controls in the world when the Omicron variant emerged late last year, banning all entry by non-Japanese people, including students and foreign family members of Japanese or permanent residents, except in exceptional circumstances.

The measures ignited protests and a petition calling for change, especially to reduce family separations.

"We will take into account accumulated scientific knowledge on the Omicron variant, changes in infection conditions inside and outside Japan, and other countries' border control measures," Prime Minister Fumio Kishida told reporters on Saturday.

(Reporting by Vishal Vivek in Bengaluru; Editing by Christina Fincher)

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