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Taiwan is aiming for an early end of its mandatory quarantine for all arrivals and has made the necessary preparations, Prime Minister Su Tseng-chang said on Friday, as the government continues to relax controls put in place to contain the spread of COVID. 19.

Taiwan has kept its entry and quarantine rules in place as much of the rest of Asia loosened or revoked them completely, although in June it reduced the number of days spent in solitary confinement for arrivals to three from the previous seven.

Taiwan has reported over 5.7 million domestic cases since the beginning of the year, led by the more contagious variant of the Omicron. With over 99% of those showing no or only mild symptoms, the government has loosened rather than tightened restrictions in its “new Taiwan model,” although it has not provided a timeline for when quarantine rules could be lifted.

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That said while the cases were progressively increasing at the time that was in line with expectations.

“We are also preparing for constant openness with all ministries and departments,” he told reporters.

Pictured: A person gets a COVID-19 test in Taipei, Taiwan on May 24, 2022.
(REUTERS / Ann Wang)

“If during the (next) two weeks it can be monitored and the forecasts are as we had them initially, if (cases) gradually increase and then slow down, then we can open up earlier.”

Chuang Jen-hsiang, deputy director general of the Taiwan Centers for Disease Control, said this week it is possible that the quarantine rule will be lifted completely next month.

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Taiwan this week began resuming visa-free entry for visitors from countries including the United States and Canada, although the need for a PCR test on arrival remains, as does the current limit of 50,000 arrivals per week.

Taiwan, which has a well-vaccinated population, has already abolished the requirement for negative PCR tests before departure.

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Throughout the pandemic, Taiwanese citizens and foreign residents were never banned from leaving and then returning, but had to quarantine themselves at home or in a hotel.

Prior to the pandemic, Taiwan was a popular tourist destination primarily for Asian visitors, with Japan, South Korea and Southeast Asia the most important markets.

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