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Norway: COVID-19 Travel Restrictions Found to Violate European Economic Area Agreement

(June 4, 2021) On May 27, 2021, the European Free Trade Agreement (EFTA) Surveillance Authority announced in a news release that Norwegian COVID-19 travel restrictions on entry into the country violated the free movement provisions of the European Economic Area (EEA) Agreement. Under the European Economic Area (EEA) Agreement, three members of EFTA—Iceland, Lichtenstein, and […]

Iceland: New COVID-19 Rules for Incoming International Travelers Take Effect

(May 4, 2021) On April 27, 2021, new rules took effect in Iceland governing international arrivals in the country. The rules prohibit nonessential travel to Iceland from countries that register more than 700 new cases of COVID-19 infections per 100,000 inhabitants on a rolling 14-day average in accordance with the European Centre for Disease Prevention […]

Ecuador: National Assembly Approves Amendment to Law on Human Mobility

(Mar. 26, 2021) On February 5, 2021, Ecuador’s National Assembly approved reforms to the Organic Law of Human Mobility. Among other measures, the changes provide new grounds for the inadmissibility and deportation of foreign citizens. The amendments allow deportation of aliens through administrative procedure. Ecuador’s new rules prohibit admission of foreign nationals who use false […]

China: Digital Vaccination Certificate for Citizens Traveling Overseas Launched

(Mar. 18, 2021) On March 8, 2021, China launched a digital vaccination certificate for its citizens, named the International Travel Health Certificate, to “facilitate safe and orderly cross-border travel,” according to a statement issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) on the same day. The certificate shows details about the holder’s current COVID-19 vaccination […]

International: United Nations Welcomes Loosening of Sanctions in Gulf Region

(Feb. 17, 2021) On January 5, 2021, United Nations (U.N.) Secretary-General António Guterres issued a statement welcoming the news that Saudi Arabia had lifted the economic and political sanctions it had imposed on Qatar since 2017. Guterres was joined two days later by U.N. Special Rapporteur on unilateral coercive measures and human rights Alena Douhan, […]

China: Health QR Code Now Required for Foreigners Flying to China

(Dec. 14, 2020) On November 23, 2020, the Chinese Embassy in the United States published a notice requiring non-Chinese citizens to obtain a QR code marked “HDC” (Health Declaration Code) in order to board flights to China. The new requirement entered into effect on December 1, 2020. According to the notice, foreign passengers can apply […]

China: Travel Ban Lifted for Foreigners Holding Certain Chinese Residence Permits

(Oct. 14, 2020) On September 23, 2020, China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) and National Immigration Administration (NIA) jointly issued an announcement of a rule change that allows foreign nationals holding valid Chinese residence permits for work, personal matters, and family reunification to enter China without applying for new visas. (Announcement on Entry by Foreign […]

China: Government Requires All Passengers to Present Negative COVID-19 Test to Board Flights to China

(July 24, 2020) On July 20, 2020, three Chinese authorities—the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC), the General Administration of Customs, and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs—jointly issued an announcement requiring both foreign citizens and returning Chinese citizens to present negative COVID-19 test results before boarding flights to China. The required nucleic acid tests must […]

China: Citizens Must Obtain Green Health Code to Board Flights Returning to China

(July 9, 2020) On April 7, 2020, the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) and the General Administration of Customs jointly issued an announcement requiring Chinese citizens returning home from 26 countries to obtain a green health code before boarding flights. The rule aims to reduce the cross-border spread of COVID-19, according to the announcement. […]

Finland: Government Further Restricts Travel in Effort to Stem Spread of COVID-19

(Apr. 14, 2020) On April 7, 2020, the Finnish government announced new rules for border crossings, affecting particularly Åland (a semi-autonomous Swedish-speaking island in the Baltic Sea) and northern border regions in Finland, Norway, and Sweden. Under the new rules anyone arriving in Finland, including Åland, must spend two weeks in quarantine. The government recommends […]