Japan recorded no deaths from COVID-19 on Sunday for the first time in 15 months, amid a rapid decline in infections in the country.
Health authorities said on Monday that there had been no coronavirus deaths the day before. The pandemic has claimed a total of 18,310 lives in Japan.
The country on Monday lifted entry restrictions for foreign students, workers and short-stay business travelers who have completed their vaccinations, have activity plans guaranteed by local contacts and spend 10 days in voluntary isolation.
The quarantine for Japanese citizens and foreign residents was also reduced to three days, from the previous 10.
The last day without deaths from COVID-19 in Japan was August 2, 2020, according to the Ministry.
Japan suffered several waves of infections, including one fueled by the delta variant last summer, when daily cases reached 25,000.
The health system was close to collapse and tens of thousands of patients who could not get hospital beds had to recover at home.
Japan records 0 COVID-19 deaths for 1st time in 15 months
In Tokyo, daily new cases nearly reached 6,000.
Cases in the country began to fall in September. Experts have attributed the decline to the advancement of vaccination, as well as the widespread use of masks and disinfectants, among other reasons.
Despite a slow start, vaccinations in Japan picked up pace in June and now almost 74% have completed their immunization. The government plans to start booster doses in December and procure newly developed drugs to treat COVID-19.
Japan is gradually reopening social and economic activity, although experts warn against lifting restrictions too quickly.
Dr. Shigeru Omi, who heads a government coronavirus committee, insisted on the need to identify early signs of any new outbreak and take swift action.