Taiwan to welcome return of first batch of international students

8 graduating foreign students scheduled to arrive in Taiwan on Friday afternoon

First batch of foreign students set to arrive Taiwan Friday afternoon. 

First batch of foreign students set to arrive Taiwan Friday afternoon.  (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — University staff have been sent to welcome the arrival of the first batch of international students who had been denied entry into Taiwan for more than three months due to border control measures imposed by the Taiwan government.

According to Radio Taiwan International, eight graduating foreign students are expected to land at Taipei Taoyuan International Airport Friday afternoon (June 26) and be escorted to quarantine locations arranged by their respective schools. So far, the Ministry of Education (MOE) has granted entry to 2,238 foreign students who are due to graduate this summer, with 62 planning to enter the island nation before July 5.

At a press conference last week, Education Minister Pan Wen-chung (潘文忠) announced the decision to relax Taiwan's border restrictions for students from 11 countries and regions deemed as low-risk for coronavirus. These include Vietnam, Hong Kong, Macau, Thailand, Palau, Australia, New Zealand, Brunei, Fiji, Mongolia, and Bhutan.

Out of the 2,238 students who have been selected to return, 90 percent are from Hong Kong, Macau, and Vietnam, as shown by MOE statistics.

The ministry said all incoming students will be required to undergo 14 days of quarantine and their health conditions will be monitored on a daily basis. It added that it will continue to consult with the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) to provide an updated list of low-risk countries from which students can be allowed to travel to Taiwan.

On Wednesday (June 24), Deputy Education Minister Liu Meng-chi (劉孟奇) reminded schools to ensure foreign students respected the quarantine policies, warning that one student’s non-compliance could damage trust in the border reopening. He also expressed hope that a standard operating procedure could be established for all arriving international students in the coming months, reported CNA.