KATHMANDU: The Department of Immigration under the Ministry of Home Affairs has today announced sweeping travel restrictions as a measure against COVID-19.
The Department issued the notice considering the World Health Organization’s declaration that the coronavirus outbreak was now a pandemic.
Visa-on-arrival for all foreigners entering the country through Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA) immigration point has been suspended from March 14, 2020 to April 30, 2020. A meeting of the high-level coordination committee to discuss the prevention and control of the COVID-19 outbreak held on Thursday took a decision to this effect.
All foreigners with a prior valid visa of Nepal have to submit a swab test PCR health certificate issued maximum seven days before their arrival date to Nepal and must be submitted at the immigration office in TIA.
Any foreign nationals including Non Resident Nepalis (NRNs) wanting to visit Nepal for important reasons may contact the Nepali diplomatic missions abroad. A recent swab test PCR health certificate issued maximum seven days before their arrival to Nepal is mandatory along with visa application and it has to be submitted at the TIA immigration office.
On-arrival-visa (Gratis) facility granted to Non-Resident Nepali card holders is also suspended for the aforementioned period.
All foreign nationals entering Nepal from March 14, 2020 are subjected to stay in self quarantine and Nepali nationals including NRNs are subjected to stay in home quarantine for 14 days from the date of their arrival.
Foreigners with diplomatic and official visa entering Nepal for the first time or travelling back to Nepal are subjected to stay in self quarantine for 14 days.
Foreigners with business, study and working visa travelling back to Nepal are subjected to stay in self quarantine for 14 days. All Nepali nationals residing abroad are requested to avoid non-essential travel and are urged to follow high precautionary measures.
All the land ports of entry remain closed for arrival in Nepal during the aforementioned period to the foreigners from third countries and are requested to use Tribhuvan International Airport only.
Likewise, all the permits for mountaineering expeditions issued and to be issued for the spring season of 2020 are suspended.
As other drastic measures, the government plans to completely halt flights to and from affected countries. It will seal border points and only allow import/export of essential goods. Other measures include mobilising maximum human resources, logistics and technology in all hospitals and health centres across the country and putting in place mobile health centres, if need be.