• Kyodo

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The European Union said Thursday that it has added Japan to a small list of countries for which restrictions on nonessential travelers should be lifted.

As immigration controls fall under the authority of individual member states, countries within the bloc independently decide on entry conditions for travelers, including self-quarantine periods and negative COVID-19 test results.

But with Japan’s Foreign Ministry continuing to advise against travel to Europe, it remains unlikely that the region will see a sudden increase of Japanese tourists.

Japan was removed from the list in January.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Katsunobu Kato said during a news conference in Tokyo on Thursday before the announcement that Japan would closely monitor developments in Europe.

Spain had previously announced that it would accept tourists from Japan without any restrictions from May 24, while France and Italy said travelers from Japan would be allowed entry on condition that they voluntarily quarantine and present negative COVID-19 test results.

Nonessential travelers from a total of eight countries, including South Korea, Thailand and Australia, are allowed to travel to EU states.

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