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China to restart issuing passports amid COVID-19 surge

Chinese residents submit passport applications. Associated Press/Photo by Ng Han Guan

China to restart issuing passports amid COVID-19 surge

Beijing announced on Tuesday that it will resume issuing passports and visas as part of its rapid removal of COVID restrictions. Chinese officials will begin accepting applications for passports on Jan. 8 and gradually resume admitting foreign visitors. The move could spark a flood of domestic and international Chinese tourism during the Lunar New Year celebration, which begins on Jan. 22 and is traditionally the busiest travel season of the year in China.

What about COVID? New COVID-19 cases and deaths are surging throughout the country, putting significant pressure on hospitals and funeral homes. Though government officials have only reported small numbers of cases and deaths, hospital staff report caring for hundreds of patients. Japan, India, South Korea, and Taiwan now require COVID tests for visitors coming from China in response to the increase in cases. The United States is considering imposing a similar measure.

Dig deeper: Read Eric Patterson’s opinion column about the differences between American and Chinese international security policies.

Lauren Canterberry

Lauren Canterberry is a reporter for WORLD. She graduated from the World Journalism Institute and the University of Georgia with a degree in journalism, both in 2017. She worked as a local reporter in Texas and now lives in Georgia with her husband.

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