The National Immigration Administration (NIA) announced Friday that fewer Chinese passports were issued in the first half of this year as the government maintained stringent border controls to curb COVID-19
The NIA noted in a press release that the immigration officials issued 335,000 passports in the first six months of this year, largely for the purposes of studying, working, and doing business abroad.
According to the announcement, the amount was only 2% higher than the same period in 2019.
The NIA has continued to prohibit unnecessary and non-urgent travel abroad in light of the ongoing epidemic and has enforced a stricter policy on issuing passports and other travel documents to mainland citizens, according to the statement.
Between January and June, the authorities issued 3.18 million travel permits to Hong Kong, Macao, and Taiwan, as well as 380,000 short- and long-term visas to foreigners in China.
From January to June, almost 85,000 people were apprehended crossing the border illegally, and approximately 31,000 foreigners were discovered illegally entering the nation, working, and remaining here.