MANILA – The Philippines will extend a ban on entry of foreigners until the end of April as coronavirus cases surge, Malacañang said on Friday.
The travel ban, which went into effect on March 22, was originally set to end on April 21.
But the interagency task force leading the country’s response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak approved “an extension of the temporary ban on entry of foreigners until April 30, 2021,” presidential spokesman Harry Roque said.
“Foreigners holding valid entry exemption documents duly issued by the Department of Foreign Affairs before March 22, 2021 will be allowed to enter the Philippines,” he said in a statement.
Roque said earlier that exceptions include:
- members of international organizations and their families,
- Aliens participating in medical repatriation,
- Foreign seafarers participating in the crew change green channel scheme,
- Foreign spouses and children of Filipinos traveling with them,
- and emergency or humanitarian cases,
Malacañang said all Filipinos can return to the Philippines.
The Civil Aviation Authority has capped daily passenger arrivals at NAIA to 1,500 until April 19 to help curb the spread of COVID-19.
In its latest bulletin, the Department of Health (DOH) said that as of Thursday, 904,285 cumulative cases of coronavirus infection had been reported in the country, of which 183,527, or 20.3 percent, were active cases
The agency also reported 148 new coronavirus deaths, bringing the country’s coronavirus death toll to 15,594.