TOKYO, April 21 (Xinhua) -- The number of foreign visitors to Japan in March plummeted by 93.6 percent from a year ago as entry restrictions remain in place to curb the spread of COVID-19, the government said in a report on Wednesday.
According to estimates by the Japan National Tourism Organization, 12,300 foreign travelers arrived in Japan in March. Among them, China accounted for the most with 4,000, followed by South Korea with 2,000 and India with 700.
Meanwhile, the number of Japanese nationals leaving the country in March plummeted 89.4 percent from a year earlier to 28,900.
Although the latest figure of foreign visitors marked the 18th consecutive monthly decline, it increased 4,900 from February, said the report.
The rise is mainly due to the arrival of those permitted to enter the country under "special exceptional circumstances" such as exchange students ahead of the new academic year, as well as partners of Japanese nationals.
Japan currently does not allow new foreign entries except for foreign nationals with valid residence permits amid rising COVID-19 cases driven by more contagious variants.