Q and A: concerning Taiwan’s border control measures that went into effect on March 19, 2020

Q&A concerning Taiwan’s border control measures that went into effect on March 19, 2020


Q1: Do the new border control measures announced by Taiwan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which went into effect on March 19, annul visa-free entry, landing visas, and eVisas for foreign nationals? Can foreign nationals holding a valid visa still enter Taiwan?
A: The border control measures announced by Taiwan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs were implemented in response to the continued spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak. Foreign nationals who are eligible for visa-free entry or hold a visitor or resident visa and wish to enter Taiwan from March 19 must hold relevant documents to qualify for exempted status. These documents must be presented to the National Immigration Agency (NIA) personnel at the port of entry for approval. Those holding special entry permits issued by R.O.C. (Taiwan) overseas missions, valid Alien Resident Certificates, or MOFA ID Cards will be allowed entry following inspection by NIA personnel.

Q2: Under what circumstances do foreign nationals qualify for a special entry permit? What are some examples?
A: Apart from the aforementioned foreign nationals who can still enter Taiwan, R.O.C. (Taiwan) overseas missions may also grant special entry permits to foreign nationals when there are clear and urgent reasons for them to visit Taiwan based on, for example, humanitarian grounds or approval by competent authorities in Taiwan.


Q3: Can foreign nationals who have already entered Taiwan extend their visas while in the country?
A: Foreign nationals who have already entered Taiwan cannot extend their visas while in the country, unless they can demonstrate force majeure. Meanwhile, Taiwan’s border control measures in response to the COVID-19 epidemic do not bar foreign nationals from leaving Taiwan. Foreign nationals must therefore leave the country before the end of the duration of stay specified on their visa.

Q4: Can foreign spouses and minor children of Taiwan nationals or foreign nationals legally residing in Taiwan still enter the country if they do not have an R.O.C. (Taiwan) Resident Certificate?
A: Such spouses and minor children may apply for a special entry permit with R.O.C. (Taiwan) overseas missions. 

Q5: Can foreign nationals apply to competent authorities in Taiwan for an approval letter?
A: Yes, foreign nationals can apply to competent authorities in Taiwan for an approval letter. However, in these cases the reason for visiting Taiwan must be on diplomatic or official business, fulfilling commercial and contractual obligations, or requiring special permission; otherwise, he or she will not be allowed entry.

Q6: If foreign nationals wish to visit Taiwan for nonessential business activities (i.e., any business activity that does not involve fulfilling commercial and contractual obligations), can they still enter the country?
A: Foreign nationals will not be allowed entry unless they show proof that they are visiting Taiwan to fulfill commercial and contractual obligations, or a job acceptance letter or employment contract issued by competent authorities in Taiwan.

Q7: Are foreign migrant workers eligible for special entry permits?
A: Foreign migrant workers holding work permits issued by Taiwan’s Ministry of Labor may enter the country with migrant worker visas issued by R.O.C. (Taiwan) overseas missions. 

Q8: Do foreign nationals who are allowed entry into Taiwan still have to comply with relevant quarantine measures?
A: Yes. For more information on quarantine measures, please visit the website of the Taiwan Centers for Disease Control: https://www.cdc.gov.tw/