TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The Ministry of Education (MOE) announced on Tuesday (Aug. 24) that international students can officially start the process of applying for entry into Taiwan that day.
Although Taiwan lowered its epidemic control measures to Level 2 on July 27 as local COVID cases continued to subside significantly, international students without a residence permit were still not allowed to enter the country, prompting scholarship recipients to pen an open letter of protest. On Aug. 11, the MOE announced that a plan enabling foreign students to enter Taiwan had been completed and submitted to the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC), which was approved on Aug. 21.
On Tuesday, the MOE sent a letter to colleges and universities announcing that foreign students without residence permits can begin the process of applying for entry to Taiwan for the coming semester effective 10 a.m. that day. Some 13,000 international students will be permitted to apply for entry this fall, including students enrolled in degree programs, Ministry of Foreign Affairs' Taiwan Scholarship recipients, and Huayu Enrichment Scholarship (HES) awardees.
The MOE said that given the severity of the pandemic, arriving foreign students must undergo quarantine for 14 days and pass a PCR test before they will be able to leave. The government encourages the students to stay at official quarantine centers.
The daily cost of a quarantine room is NT$1,500 per person, for a total of NT$21,000 over the course of 14 days. The Ministry of Health and Welfare said it will allocate housing to each student in these centers one day before they enter Taiwan.
The letter pointed out that if students have a recent travel history to high-risk areas, they must stay in quarantine centers. If they are originating from low- and medium-risk areas, their school can provide one-room off-campus dormitories, or arrange for them to stay in epidemic prevention hotels.
In all cases, the school must arrange for the students to be transported in special epidemic prevention vehicles to their quarantine accommodation. Students are not allowed to take their own method of transportation to quarantine locations.
While the students undergo quarantine, school officials must monitor their health status every day and report the results to the health department. The MOE stated that all foreign students must enter the country through Taoyuan International Airport.
If an academic institution has too many students arriving in Taiwan on the same day or on the same flight, they can inform the MOE, and the ministry will dispatch personnel to arrange transportation to and check-in at a quarantine center.