China to Resume Visas for Japanese Students After Two Years

Tokyo airport, Japan

The Chinese embassy in Japan will start issuing long-term visas for Japanese students for the first time in two years.

According to the embassy, students can submit their applications for visas at the embassy's visa service centers and consulates general in Japan.

After their arrival in China, students will be able to attend university only after completing ten days of quarantine and health monitoring.

During a media conference held last Friday, the Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin said that "active arrangements" were made to resume the issuance of student visas.

"We welcome the return of international students to China to resume their studies," he was quoted as saying by Japan Today during the press conference.

China imposed tough restrictions on the entry of foreign nationals in March 2020, when the COVID-19 pandemic started to spread. Due to COVID-19-related entry restrictions, at least 220 students from Japan could not continue their studies in China, according to data by the Japan Chamber of Commerce and Industry in China.

Recently, China has announced it will reopen to international students from several countries, including Indian students.

The Chinese Embassy in India updated the "Application Procedures and Material Requirements of China Visa" with ten categories of visas, including study visas. The embassy notified that it would issue X1-visas to Indian students, which is issued to students who want to pursue long-term studies, newly enrolled students, as well as those who return to China to continue education.

China Admissions, an online platform for international students to apply to universities in China, notes on its website that the Chinese border is categorized as partially open, adding that many international students have already received permission to return to the country.

"In addition to the embassies that have already opened student X1 visa applications, we expect all PRC embassies to open their student visa services again in a gradual and coordinated manner. An exact timeline or date is unknown at this stage," China Admissions points out.

Many countries allow international students to apply for X1 visas to China, including the United States, the United Kingdom, Ireland, France, Sweden, Hungary, India, Russia, Algeria, Mexico, Canada, and more.

However, even students who are not from the abovementioned countries or other, but have been privately contacted by a university, are able to return to China.

In 2020, the number of students from Japan studying abroad decreased by 98.6 percent, data by the Japan Student Services Organization (JASSO) have revealed. In other words, back then, the number of Japanese students heading to other countries around the world dropped to 1,487.

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