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Taiwan opens door to independent Chinese travelers from 11 more cities

Taiwan opens door to independent Chinese travelers from 11 more cities

Taipei, March 18 (CNA) Taiwan announced on Wednesday that it plans to allow residents from a further 11 Chinese cities to visit the country without having to join tour groups. The new measure, which will come into force on April 15, will increase to 47 the number of Chinese cities benefiting from the independent Chinese tourists program first introduced in 2011, according to the Tourism Bureau. The cities added to the list are Haikao (??) in Hainan Province, Hohhot (????) in the Inner Mongolian Autonomous Region, Lanzhou (??) in Gansu Province, Yinchuan (??) in the Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region, Zhoushan (??) in Zhejiang Province, Huizhou (??) in Guangdong Province, Weihai (??) in Shandong Province, Longyan (??) in Fujian Province, Guilin (??) in Guangxi Province, Changzhou (??) and Xuzhou (??) in Jiangsu Province. The quota on the number of entry permits for independent Chinese travelers, which currently stands at 4,000 per day, is expected to be increased within the first half of the year, the Tourism Bureau said. Statistics from the bureau show that the number of visits by independent Chinese travelers reached 1.19 million last year, the highest since the policy was introduced in June 2011. This represents an average 3,251 visits per day, an increase of 127 percent on the previous year, according to official statistics, which also indicate an average 4,554 visits to Taiwan by independent Chinese travelers per day in the first two months of the year. Deputy Director-General of Tourism Chang Shi-chung (???) said he expects the limit on the number of independent Chinese visitors to be increased this year, but the quota will remain at 4,000 per day for the moment. Given that Taiwan is going to great lengths to create more tourist attractions, "there should be a chance in the first half of the year (for the government) to increase" the upper limit for visitors, Chang said. As of February, there have been more than 2.199 million visits to Taiwan by independent Chinese travelers, according to official statistics. Roget Hsu (???), former secretary-general of the Travel Agent Association of the ROC, welcomed the relaxation of the quota limit and expressed the hope that as more and more independent Chinese travelers visit Taiwan, cross-strait tourism will gradually be normalized. Hsu said he hoped the limit on independent Chinese travelers would be increased to 5,000 people per day, estimating that such an increase would increase tourism revenue by 12 percent. Hsu now heads a tourism management consultant company. (By Angela Tsai and Elizabeth Hsu)


Updated : 2021-09-24 18:21 GMT+08:00