Japan osaka airport
Photo: akira535/Pixabay

Japan updates its re-entry rules for foreign residents

The government has added more 'exceptional circumstances', including medical emergencies and giving witness testimony

By
Kasey Furutani
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The saga for Japan’s foreign residents continues. With Japan’s entry ban covering 111 countries and regions, foreign residents and tourists alike have been unable to enter Japan. In late May, the Immigration Services Agency (ISA) released a list of ‘exceptional circumstances’ under which foreign residents would be allowed back into the country, such as attending a relative’s memorial service or undergoing important medical treatments. 

On June 12, the ISA updated its list of exceptions, with more specific re-entry rules now available on the Ministry of Justice website

Here are the updated allowances for those who departed Japan before the country or region they visited fell under the entry ban. In these circumstances, foreign residents will be allowed back into Japan if:

  • They are separated from family in Japan.
  • The resident’s child is enrolled in a Japanese educational institution.
  • The resident requires medical treatment (such as surgery, re-examination or childbirth) at a Japanese medical institution.
  • The resident required medical treatment (such as surgery, re-examination or childbirth) at an overseas medical institution.
  • The resident was required to act as a witness in court.
  • The resident visited a relative in critical health or attended a deceased relative’s funeral.

These are the updated allowances that apply to those who departed Japan after the country or region they visited fell under the entry ban. In these circumstances, foreign residents will be allowed back into Japan if:

  • The resident required medical treatment (such as surgery, re-examination or childbirth) at an overseas medical institution.
  • The resident was required to act as a witness in court. 
  • The resident visited a relative in critical health or attended a deceased relative’s funeral.

In the mean time, Japan also seems to be working towards gradually opening its borders to the world. Plans include a potential travel bubble and possibly allowing 250 business travellers per day from Australia, New Zealand, Thailand and Vietnam. 

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