hile reopening parks, KTVs, and the Great Wall within the country, China is making it near impossible for visitors from outside of the country to get in.
China’s Civil Aviation Administration has ordered all foreign airlines to maintain only one air route to China and operate no more than a single flight per week starting on Sunday.
Domestic airlines have similarly been told to retain just one air route to each foreign country and fly the route only once per week.
These flights will be allowed to be at no more than 75 percent capacity.
The administration warned that further cuts may be made in the future, depending on how the coronavirus pandemic situation plays out.
After getting its domestic Covid-19 outbreak under control, China has shifted its focus this month to preventing a potential “second wave” of the epidemic from washing over the country via international arrivals at airports.
So far, 541 imported coronavirus cases have been reported in China with a spike this week seeing dozens of new cases being reported each day.
A few hours the aviation administration made its announcement, China’s Foreign Ministry put out a statement declaring that all foreign nationals would be banned from entering the country beginning at midnight on Friday, including even those with valid visas and residence permits.
The ban does not include the chief source of imported coronavirus cases in China — overseas Chinese nationals fleeing outbreaks elsewhere. However, these restrictions on flights will unofficially address that issue making it extremely difficult for them to find a seat back home.
All these moves are more than a little bit ironic considering that it wasn’t so long ago that the Chinese government angry at other countries for putting restrictions on travelers from China, calling such actions “inappropriate.”
In this effort, China cited recommendations from the World Health Organization, which had advised against placing restrictions on travelers from China or Wuhan.
WHO does not recommend any specific health measures for travellers to and from Wuhan,#China🇨🇳
— World Health Organization (WHO) (@WHO) January 10, 2020
What a different world two months ago was, huh?