China’s National Immigration Administration stated that the provision takes immediate effect and includes 72 to 144-hour visa-free transit.
On Tuesday, China’s embassies and consulates in South Korea and Japan also canceled the issuance of visas for individuals from those nations with plans to travel to their countries.
Beijing thus began to comply with its warnings, that it will reciprocate border measures adopted by some 30 countries worldwide against outbound passengers, citing concerns about a possible new surge of Covid-19 cases in their territories.
From January 5, 2023, South Korea has been demanding negative PCR tests for travelers within 48 hours or an antigen test conducted within 24 hours before departing from China.
Japan has been also requiring PCR tests and placing Covid-19 cases in isolation for seven days.
On Sunday, China downgraded the emergency level with which it handles Covid-19 contagions, removed more health controls to focus on severe cases, and expanded vaccination while living with the disease and the virus that causes it.