Japan temporarily suspends green lane travel arrangements

Japan halts entry from all countries to stop spread of COVID-19 variants

The Japanese government has suspended its green lane travel arrangements with other countries, until the country’s state of emergency is lifted.

This affects the Singapore-Japan Reciprocal Green Lane (RGL). During this time, travellers will also not be able to apply to travel from Japan to Singapore given the reciprocal nature of the RGL, said Singapore’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) in a media statement.

Japan halts entry from all countries to stop the spread of Covid-19 variants; Narita International Airport pictured

Travellers who have already received approval to enter Singapore under the RGL can continue to do so, but are advised to check the latest immigration regulations upon their return to Japan. Singapore work-pass holders from Japan may continue to use the Work Pass Holder General Lane for entry into Singapore.

All travellers entering Singapore will be subject to prevailing health requirements.

This comes as Japan temporarily bans the entry of all non-resident foreign nationals into the country amid a surge of Covid-19 infections.

As of mid-January, the Japanese government extended the state of emergency covering Tokyo and its three neighbouring prefectures of Chiba, Kanagawa and Saitama to include Osaka, Kyoto and Hyogo, Aichi, Gifu, Tochigi and Fukuoka prefectures. Under the declaration, residents in those areas are being asked to avoid all non-essential outings.

The number of infections nationwide has hovered around 6,000 for the past several days, with the most rapid increase seen in urban areas. The detection of a new, more contagious variant of the coronavirus in four travellers who arrived in Japan from Brazil earlier in January has also added to the concern.

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