MOFA responds to Taiwan's exclusion from permitted travel destinations

Taiwan not listed in border reopening plans of Japan, New Zealand, Greece, Australia

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MOFA Spokeswoman Joanne Ou says Taiwan respects decisions made by other countries. (MOFA photo)

MOFA Spokeswoman Joanne Ou says Taiwan respects decisions made by other countries. (MOFA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) responded Tuesday (June 2) to reports of Taiwan being excluded from several countries' border control relaxation, saying the Taiwanese government fully respects decisions made by members of the global community.

Despite its successful pandemic prevention measures, Taiwan was reportedly not listed as a partnering country for several international travel bubbles. Japan, New Zealand, Greece, and Australia have all announced their plans to ease entry bans on visitors from selected nations but Taiwan is not one of them, according to Storm Media.

National Taiwan University College of Public Health Dean Chan Chang-chuan (詹長權) said he was especially surprised by Taiwan's exclusion in Greece's list of accepted countries for tourists. He said nations with higher risks of coronavirus infections, including China and South Korea, are listed so there is no reason why the Mediterranean nation should disallow Taiwanese visitors.

During a daily press conference on Tuesday, MOFA Spokeswoman Joanne Ou (歐江安) stressed that the Taiwanese authorities will respect policies implemented by foreign governments on the basis that they will respect Taiwan's decisions in return. She added that the country's exclusion from travel bubbles will not affect how it carries out its travel policies for international tourists.

Ou said experts from Taiwan's Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) will only allow foreign visitors under the premise that the Taiwanese will be safe from contracting the virus. She also promised that the Taiwanese government will continue to contact other countries about resuming bilateral travel, reported New Talk.