China is to allow some foreign executives to circumnavigate the travel ban and enter China, according to reports. “People familiar with the matter”, who declined to be named as it has not yet been made public, told Bloomberg that key companies from certain foreign countries can apply for exemptions to the ban in order to get their employees back to work.
According to the sources, those entering would need to show they are not infected before they travel by getting tested at an approved center. They would also still need to serve a mandatory quarantine, although that has been reduced from 14 days to just 48 hours for South Korean workers currently entering China under the so-called “fast-track” scheme.
South Korea and China set up the fast-track entry agreements between the two countries earlier this month in a bid to resume essential work, ramp up production and reopen supply chains. South Korean businesspeople are now able to travel to 10 Chinese provinces, with those issued with visas able to apply for quarantine exemptions if they pass a health test. In a news conference on April 30, a spokesman for China’s Foreign Ministry said it was keen to set up fast-track arrangements with other countries.
Foreigners have been banned from entering China since late March as the government tries to keep its COVID-19 numbers down while the virus ravages countries around the world. The latest news, however, shows China is keen to reopen its borders and get the country back to business as soon as possible.
“China will establish fast-track channels for business, logistics, production and technical services professionals from some countries to travel to China under the premise that safe epidemic prevention is ensured,” the Ministry of Foreign Affairs told Bloomberg in a statement.
German carmaker Volkswagen is ahead of the curve, having already got their executive vice president for research and development back into China, according to Bloomberg’s source.
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Keywords: China travel ban exemptions
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