China says not granting passport renewals for non-essential travel

China will "normally issue passports" for individuals who need to travel abroad for study, employment, or business. PHOTO: ST FILE

SHANGHAI (REUTERS) - China's National Immigration Administration said it will not be renewing passports for non-essential travel while the international Covid-19 epidemic situation is still severe and cross border travel poses "great security risks".

The administration said in a statement on social media on Saturday (Feb 12) it will "normally issue passports" for individuals who need to travel abroad for study, employment, or business.

But rumours it will issue passport renewals for individuals looking to travel abroad for leisure are false, the authority said.

China has tightened controls over its citizens' cross-border travel to lower the risk of the virus being brought in from overseas and spreading domestically.

It has suspended the issuance of new common passports for individuals who intend to go abroad for non-urgent matters.

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