China, India Implement New Restrictions and Lockdown Measures Restricting Travel

March 30, 2020

On March 26, 2020, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in China announced that effective March 28, 2020, all foreign nationals holding valid visas or residence permits will be temporarily barred from entering the country. Non-Chinese nationals traveling to China must apply for a new visa at a Chinese embassy or consulate and demonstrate necessary economic, trade, scientific or technological activities, or out of emergency humanitarian needs in order to secure a visa approval. Earlier this week, on March 24, the Government of India ("Gol") announced a three-week country-wide lockdown, during which all air, rail, and roadway travel will remain suspended except for essential goods and emergency services.

These restrictions may significantly impact travel of U.S. nationals and persons from other countries who are going to China and India for business trips or work assignments. Persons going to China will need to apply for a new visa if issued after March 28, which may be more difficult to obtain a new visa for applicants from certain countries due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Persons traveling to India for work or business will be barred for at least the next three weeks, unless they can demonstrate they meet one of the exceptions laid out in the Gol's order.

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