Trial of New System for Checking Foreigners Departing for Japan

NHK (Japan Broadcasting Corporation) reported on March 30 that the Immigration Services Agency of Japan has decided to conduct a trial introduction of a system to confirm the information of foreign nationals heading to Japan in order to prevent terrorism and alleviate congestion in immigration screening from this fiscal year (FY2024).


The report says that, in this new system, when foreign nationals check in at airports, airlines will provide information such as passport details to the immigration authorities. The immigration authorities will meticulously match this information with their databases to identify individuals registered as terrorists, those who have received sentences of imprisonment for one year or more in Japan or abroad, and those who have been apprehended for illegal stay in Japan. If identified, the airlines will be promptly informed that there is a possibility that the individual may not be allowed to land in Japan, and the decision of whether to board will be determined by the airline.


According to the Immigration Services Agency quoted in the report, there have been years when the number of people denied entry upon arrival in Japan reached about 10,000. Measures such as deportation are taken for those who are refused entry and then refuse to return to their home countries. Additionally, the number of foreign visitors to Japan was approximately 25.8 million last year, and congestion in passport control has become an issue. NHK reports that this system has already been introduced in the United States and South Korea.