Taiwan adds 43 countries to travel quarantine list
ROC Central News Agency
03/16/2020 09:26 PM
Taipei, March 16 (CNA) Taiwan on Monday issued its highest Level 3 travel warning for 43 countries and regions in the Middle East, Eastern Europe and Northern Africa, effective Tuesday, to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Under a Level 3 warning, travelers arriving from those countries will be required to self-quarantine for 14 days, according to the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC), and any unnecessary trips to these countries should be avoided.
The 43 countries and regions are: Russia, Belarus, Ukraine, Romania, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Kosovo, Croatia, Albania, Northern Macedonia, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Oman, Yemen, Kuwait, Bahrain, Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Israel, Turkey, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Palestine, Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, Algeria, Morocco, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Armenia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Mongolia.
These countries were added to the list because a number of Taiwanese returning from the Middle East, Eastern Europe and Northern Africa have contracted COVID-19, the CECC said.
Four of the eight new cases announced Monday, for example, originated in Turkey and Egypt, according to the center.
The 43 countries announced Monday added to a list of countries and regions with Level 3 warnings that already included European Schengen-area countries, Iran, China, South Korea and Italy and brought the total number to 76.
In addition to widening the list of countries to which travel restrictions apply, the CECC also announced tougher punishments for travelers who fail to heed the CECC's travel warnings or refuse to comply with existing policies.
People who violate 14-day quarantine restrictions were already subject to being fined NT$100,000 to NT$1 million but will now have their names made public, the CECC said.
Also beginning Tuesday, people who leave on unnecessary trips to countries with Level 3 travel warnings will not be entitled to the NT$1,000 (US$32.86) per day stipend during the 14-day quarantine period.
They will also be charged additional fees, though the exact details will be announced at a later date, the CECC said.
Individuals who submit false information in the mandatory health declaration upon entry will also be ineligible for the quarantine stipend, the CECC said.
Meanwhile, foreign nationals who travel to Taiwan on short-term trips from countries under a Level 1 or Level 2 alert will have to pay for all associated medical expenses if they show symptoms of the novel coronavirus disease and need to be tested, beginning Tuesday, the CECC said.
For overseas travelers from countries under a Level 3 travel warning or who have been in contact with confirmed COVID-19 patients, medical expenses resulting from their testing and treatment, if any, will be paid for by the government, the CECC said.
Previously, all foreign nationals who were confirmed to have COVID-19 in Taiwan and received treatment here had their medical expenses paid for by Taiwan's government.
For information on the latest travel notices for international destinations, please see the Taiwan Centers for Disease Control website: https://www.cdc.gov.tw/En
(By Chiang Yi-ching)
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