Photo/Illutration Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, center, is given an on-site tour of COVID-19 antigen tests conducted at Tokyo’s Haneda Airport in February. (Pool)

The government plans to double its daily ceiling of arrivals from overseas to 20,000 starting June 1, according to sources.

It currently restricts entry to up to 10,000 arrivals per day as a precaution against the spread of the novel coronavirus.

The government is also considering exempting arriving passengers from being tested for COVID-19 if they come from nations with low rates of new infections, test negative upon departure from their home countries or show proof of COVID-19 vaccination.

It is expected to announce a final decision by the end of May after monitoring the infection situation in Japan, where cases have begun climbing again after the Golden Week series of national holidays that ended earlier in the month.

The easing of entry restrictions is aimed at raising daily arrivals of business travelers to the pre-pandemic level of 30,000, according to the sources.

The government, in principle, had banned new entries of foreign nationals since November 2021. It has eased entry restrictions in stages at the behest of the corporate world.

The government began allowing businesspeople, students and technical intern trainees to enter Japan in March and has gradually increased the daily quota of arrivals.