The Japanese government will end at the end of June a measure that allows foreigners unable to return to their home countries due to coronavirus border controls to extend their stays in Japan.

Tokyo has decided to terminate the measure as countries have gradually relaxed their border controls, the Immigration Services Agency of Japan said Tuesday.

A departure lobby at Narita airport near Tokyo is virtually empty on Dec. 28, 2020, amid the coronavirus pandemic. (Kyodo)

The measure was introduced in March 2020 during the early stage of the COVID-19 pandemic, mostly targeting foreigners who had completed their technical internship programs or studies in Japan.

According to the agency, individuals whose status of residence will expire on June 30 or later under six-month "designated activities" visas and who wish to extend their stays will be able to remain in Japan for an additional four months, but they will not be able to prolong their stays any further under those visas.

Those in Japan with 90-day short-stay visas, many of whom are visiting relatives or conducting business activities, will not be able to extend their stays from June 30.

As of the end of April, around 79,600 foreigners were staying in the country under the measure. The number has been declining since the start of the year in line with the easing of border controls.

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