Taiwan to cancel visa-free entry for S'poreans & Asean citizens as part of Covid-19 measure

Taiwanese are advised not to travel unnecessarily to these countries too.

Kayla Wong | Matthias Ang | March 17, 2020, 06:50 PM

Taiwan is set to cancel visa-free entry for Singaporean citizens and nationals from 18 other Asian countries in an attempt to curb the spread of the Covid-19 outbreak within its borders, Taiwanese media Apple Daily (Taiwan) and CNews reported.

The measure was announced by Taiwan's Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung on Tuesday afternoon, March 17.

It will kick in from Thursday, March 19.

Raised to Level-3 warning

Taiwan's Central Epidemic Command Centre (CECC) also announced on the same day that these 19 Asian countries, the Eastern European country of Moldova, as well as three states in the United States, have been raised to a Level-3 warning.

The new categorisation means travellers from these countries and regions will have to be quarantined for 14 days even if they obtained permission to enter the self-ruled island.

The announcement came in the wake of 10 newly-reported Covid-19 cases on Monday, March 16, all of which were imported cases who returned from Turkey, Egypt, and various European countries, such as France and Germany.

As of Tuesday, March 17, 50 of the 77 confirmed cases in Taiwan have been classified as imported, CECC said.

Mothership has reached out to Singapore's Ministry of Foreign Affairs for confirmation and further details on the announcement.

Who else is affected by the new measures?

Apart from Singapore, the 18 other Asian countries affected by the new measures include:

  • All other Asean member countries
  • Japan
  • North Korea
  • Timor-Leste
  • Bangladesh
  • Bhutan
  • Nepal
  • Sri Lanka
  • India
  • The Maldives

The three affected American states are California, Washington and New York.

The CECC previously raised its alert for 42 countries and one territory in Eastern Europe, the Middle East, Central Asia and North Africa to a Level-3 warning on Monday, March 16.

Taiwanese urged to avoid all nonessential travel to these places

The CECC has also advised Taiwanese to avoid all non-essential travel to these countries and regions.

Taipei Times reported that people who travel unnecessarily to these places will be ineligible for government quarantine subsidies, and that they will have to pay for Covid-19 testing and treatment should they test positive for the virus.

In addition, their names will be published.


Top image via The Travel Mentor