EIG COVID-19 Update | March 25, 2020

All week, EIG has sent global digests to inform our clients of all the COVID-19 developments impacting global immigration and global travel. The reports from this past week are available here.

International Updates

  • Canada | Early Wednesday, Canada’s House of Commons approved a $27 billion Canadian ($18.8 billion) stimulus bill to help people and businesses deal with the coronavirus outbreak. The bill also includes CA $55 billion in the form of tax deferrals. Government officials say they anticipate senators will quickly approve the measures.
  • Japan | The foreign ministry raised the travel alert to level 2 (out of 4) for the entire world. The Japanese government has asked Japanese people to refrain from non-essential overseas trips.
  • Malaysia | The Prime Minister of Malaysia announced earlier today that the Malaysian Movement Control Order had been extended to April 14, 2020.
  • South Africa | The country will be in lockdown from Thursday, March 26, at midnight to Thursday, April 16, at midnight.
  • Switzerland | Entry restrictions extend from today onwards to all countries (except the Principality of Liechtenstein). Only Swiss citizens, persons with a residence, or cross-border permit for Switzerland or who are in a situation of absolute necessity (death of a family member, a continuation of urgent medical treatments, etc.) are allowed to enter Switzerland.
  • Tokyo | After the city’s most significant one-day coronavirus spike, Tokyo governor Yuriko Koike asked Tokyo residents to work at home as much as possible on weekdays and stay home in the evening and weekend. In the message, she called on people coming back from abroad to abide by the 14-day self-quarantine rule.
  • The US | The White House and Senate leaders reached a deal overnight on a $2 trillion stimulus bill to support the US economy, businesses, and workers impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.

    USCIS announced the temporary closure of the offices in Rome, Italy, and Nairobi, Kenya, to the public. USCIS will post updates on their office webpages and will reschedule all appointments. Additionally, USCIS will continue to respond to email inquiries.

    USCIS is extending its temporary suspension of face-to-face services at all offices until April 7, unless the public closures are extended further. This suspension extension applies to interviews, naturalization ceremonies, and biometric appointments. USCIS will continue to provide emergency services during this time.

  • Global Hackathon | We’re inspired by the efforts of the tech community taking part in the COVID-19 Global Hackathon:
    “We’re encouraging YOU – innovators around the world – to #BuildforCOVID19 using technologies of your choice across a range of suggested themes and challenge areas – some of which have been sourced through health partners including the World Health Organization and scientists at the Chan Zuckerberg Biohub.

    The hackathon welcomes locally and globally focused solutions, and is open to all developers – with support from technology companies and platforms including Facebook, Giphy, Microsoft, Pinterest, Slack, TikTok, Twitter and WeChat, who will be sharing resources to support participants throughout the submission period.”


Also, please listen to EIG’s Immigration Nerds podcast for this week in immigration, featuring policy updates from DOS, DHS, USCIS, and ICE.

We will continue to send updates daily or as more COVID-19-related news is available. We recognize this situation continues to evolve; if you have specific questions, please contact your employer or EIG attorney.