As of 7 December 2022, the National Health Commission of China announced the optimization and adjustment of the epidemic prevention requirements.
No negative PCR test report within a certain number of hours or green health code is required to be presented prior to entry of public places like shopping malls, restaurants, office buildings, and metro stations in many major cities in China. However, places in high-risked areas like elderly care institutions, child welfare institutions, medical institutions, schools and Public Security Bureaus, they are still required.
In addition, people travelling to China will no longer need to check their health code upon arrival if the COVID-19 test results are negative. People who are asymptomatic or have mild symptoms can quarantine at home. While there is nationwide policy guidance, many provinces and cities have been enacting their own measures, exiting Zero-COVID at different paces.
These measures may impact our business operations. Below are some of our updates and client recommendations.
We are confident in ensuring the operation efficiency in packing, customs clearance, vessel booking and delivery. However, port delays due to labour shortages, customs inspections, and vessel booking capacity still heavily impact sea shipment. The limited flight availability for air shipment is still challenging, although we’ve seen the situation improve.
Currently, the policies regarding what measures should take after COVID-19 confirmed cases are identified vary from city to city. In Shanghai, office buildings for some visa centres/consulates are closed due to the COVID-19 confirmed cases, which has impacted outbound visa applications for some countries in certain cities.
We expect that in the next 1-2 months, there will be a bound back of COVID-19 cases in many cities due to the relaxation of control measures. Therefore the challenges of lack of manpower and shorter operations hours will result in potential delays in processing permits or visa applications in the coming months.
On the positive side, there is an expectation that a full lift of COVID restrictions will roll out in phases. In that case, the immigration process into China will resume gradually.
There will be no apparent negative impact on destination services delivery due to the relaxation of the control measures for COVID-19 prevention. Thus these special entry requirements to residential compounds, banks, mobile phone service centres or public areas will not be applied anymore.
We expect more inbound travellers and relocations to China in the coming months. Please plan well in advance for any travelling or relocations to China. While government policies are not always straightforward, you can reach out to your local Santa Fe consultant for more information and guidance.
Please don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any further questions.
Santa Fe Relocation
D: (86-21) 6233 9700 ext.599
Relocation and Immigration Services Manager
Santa Fe Relocation
D: (86-21) 6233 9700 ext. 247