TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Travelers arriving in Taiwan have to declare masks to customs if they carry more than 250, even if they are not surgical masks for medical use, the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) said Wednesday (Sept. 16).
Earlier statements from the Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) seemed to indicate that any number of masks needed to be declared to customs. Health and Welfare Minister Chen Shih-chung (陳時中) blamed the misunderstanding on poor communication between different governmental departments, CNA reported.
If passengers arriving with more than 250 masks choose the red channel at the airport and report the correct number of masks to customs officials, they will be able to bring them in after applying for a permit.
The reminder followed several incidents of imported masks, including non-medical products from China, being passed off as Taiwanese surgical masks by distributors and retailers.
As a result, the government has ordered all masks for sale to be embossed with the terms “Made in Taiwan” and “MD,” the abbreviation for “medical device.” The introduction of the new masks has been postponed to Sept. 24, while they will become available online on Oct. 12, reports said.