Taipei, Sept. 22 (CNA) Taiwan's mandatory quarantine for arriving visitors could be lifted on Oct. 13 at the earliest, Premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) announced Thursday.
The actual start date is contingent on how the local COVID-19 situation develops, Cabinet Spokesperson Lo Ping-cheng (羅秉成) quoted Su as saying after a weekly Cabinet meeting.
Su also approved first-stage measures to ease border controls that were scheduled to take effect on Sept. 29, including raising the weekly cap on arriving visitors from the current 50,000 to 60,000, and canceling mandatory deep-throat saliva PCR tests upon arrival, Lo said.
Instead, each arriving visitor will be given four rapid antigen test kits, but will not be required to perform a test on-site, he said.
In addition, the visa-waiver program which Taiwan has with 65 countries will be resumed, he said.
If "everything goes as planned," second-stage measures will be implemented on Oct. 13 after a two-week public review period, he said.
Those will include a "0+7" policy under which arriving visitors will no longer be required to quarantine for three days, but will be required to undertake seven days of "self-initiated disease prevention," he said.
In addition, the weekly arrival cap will be further raised to 150,000, he said.