TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — As one of its strict new measures to prevent the spread of the Wuhan coronavirus during autumn and winter, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) on Tuesday (Dec. 1) began requiring all inbound and transit passengers to submit a negative COVID-19 nucleic acid test report within three days of their flight to Taiwan or face a fine of up to NT$150,000.
On Nov. 18, Minister of Health and Welfare and CECC head Chen Shih-chung (陳時中) announced that from Dec. 1 to Feb. 28, 2021, all passengers, regardless of nationality or purpose of arrival, who enter or transit through Taiwan’s airports must submit proof of a negative COVID-19 nucleic acid test within three days before their scheduled flight to Taiwan. The Ministry of Transportation and Communications is supervising airlines to ensure the veracity of the test reports.
Passengers have the option of submitting negative COVID-19 NAT, polymerase chain reaction (PCR), or reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) tests.
If a passenger is found to have submitted a false test report or refuses, evades, or obstructs quarantine measures, they will be subject to a fine of between NT$10,000 (US$350) to NT$150,000. Those caught creating a false test report will also be held criminally responsible for the offense of forging instruments or seals (偽造文書印文罪).
In the event a passenger is flying from one of the 10 percent of countries that do not provide coronavirus tests, they must notify the airline in advance. The airline will then ensure that they are separated from other passengers and that they can pay to take a coronavirus test at the airport in Taiwan.
Prior to the new regulations, incoming Taiwanese citizens and foreign residents were exempt from providing negative coronavirus test results. However, Taiwan has seen an increasing number of both Taiwanese and foreign nationals testing positive for the virus during quarantine, with 24 reported on Monday alone, prompting the CECC to adopt stricter measures.
The command center reminds all passengers who want to enter Taiwan to use their mobile phones to complete the "Quarantine System for Entry" before checking in with the airline or boarding at the departure location. This will speed up customs clearance operations and community epidemic prevention measures after entry.