TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) has placed six countries in Southern Africa on its high-risk list due to the appearance of a new, heavily mutated variant of COVID that has surfaced in South Africa.
During a press conference on Monday (Nov. 29), Health Minister and CECC head Chen Shih-chung (陳時中) announced that due to a rise in the Omicron COVID variant in Africa, four more countries on the continent will be deemed high-risk starting Dec. 1. Chen said that visitors from all countries deemed to be high-risk must undergo quarantine in a quarantine center, and they will not be eligible for the shortened hotel quarantine during the Lunar New Year.
The four latest countries on Taiwan's high-risk list include Egypt, Malawi, Mozambique, and Nigeria. These now join South Africa, Botswana, Namibia, Lesotho, Eswatini, and Zimbabwe already on the list, bringing the total to 10.
Chen said that travelers from these high-risk countries will not be eligible for the "10 plus 4" and "7 plus 7" shortened hotel quarantine schemes during the Lunar New Year. However, passengers arriving from these countries will be exempt from fees to stay in the quarantine centers and to undergo COVID testing.
If an aircrew member has traveled to one of these six countries, they must undergo 14 full days of quarantine and cooperate with testing. Once their quarantine ends, they must carefully implement seven days of self-health monitoring.