Taipei, Taiwan on Wednesday revised its COVID-19 travel risk classifications for Sri Lanka and Malaysia, citing a recent uptick in the number of confirmed cases in the two countries, which means arriving business travelers will have to quarantine for longer periods than before.
In a statement, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) said Sri Lanka reported 739 new cases on Tuesday, and domestic cluster infections were rapidly increasing.
As a result, the CECC said, it was revising its COVID-19 risk level for Sri Lanka from low to medium-low.
Taiwan’s revision of Sri Lanka’s travel risk means that business travelers arriving from that country will have to request a self-paid COVID-19 test after their seventh day in quarantine, and if it comes back negative, they can be released, according to the CECC. Prior to the revision, such travelers could request the test after five days in quarantine.
According to Sri Lanka’s Health Promotion Bureau, the country recorded 196 new cases of COVID-19 on Wednesday, bringing the total number to 4,448, with 13 deaths and 3,274 recoveries.
Meanwhile, Malaysia, which was listed as low-to-medium risk country for COVID-19, has been removed from the concessionary list because it confirmed 691 new cases on Tuesday, the CECC said, adding that it fears the situation there will escalate.
With the country no longer deemed as a low-to-medium risk for COVID-19, arriving business travelers will have to quarantine for the mandatory 14 days, instead of being allowed to apply for a shortened quarantine, the CECC said.
As of Tuesday, Malaysia had a total of 13,504 confirmed cases, with 10,427 recoveries and 141 deaths, according to its Ministry of Health.
The CECC’s updated list, published Wednesday, classified 15 countries and zones as low risk, namely New Zealand, Macao, Palau, Fiji, Brunei, Thailand, Mongolia, Bhutan, Laos, Cambodia, Nauru, East Timor, Mauritius, Vietnam, and the Marshall Islands.
Business travelers from countries deemed as low risk for COVID-19 can apply to have their quarantine lifted if they test negative for COVID-19 after the fifth day, according to the CECC.
Singapore, Hong Kong, Australia, and Sri Lanka were classified as low-to-medium risk, which means that business travelers arriving in Taiwan from those countries and regions can apply for a shortened quarantine period if they test negative for COVID-19 after the seventh day.
Taiwan reported two new imported cases of COVID-19 on Wednesday, bringing the total number to 523 since the outbreak began at the end of last year, according to the CECC. Of that number, 431 are classified as imported, 486 have recovered, seven have died, and 30 are in hospital, according to the CECC. Taiwan has not confirmed a domestic infection since April 12.
Globally, COVID-19 has infected more than 35.7 million people in 188 countries and regions and has caused over 1 million deaths, according to CECC statistics as of Wednesday.
Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel