Taiwan halves Chinese plastic surgery visa validity date

Visa effective validity for Chinese visitors coming to Taiwan for plastic surgery to be shortened to three months

A doctor in Taoyuan County administers a beauty treatment on a patient. (By Central News Agency)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News)—A new proposal in Taiwan will slash the visa validity date for Chinese visitors traveling to island for health checks or plastic surgeries from the current six months to three months, while restricting any Chinese visitors that previously were appointed government officials or party members, according to a new statement by The Executive Yuan Gazette Online.

The revised visa policy under Regulations Governing the Entry Permission to Taiwan Area for the People from China for Chinese nationals visiting Taiwan restricts entry of senior Chinese government officials, and Communist Party of China members was announced on March 13, 2017.

However, the scope of limitations now expands to Chinese visitors coming to Taiwan for plastic surgery or medical health checks, reported China Times.

The Chinese-language media analyzed this might reflect strained relations between the two countries over China's abrupt detention of Taiwanese human rights activist Lee Ming-che (李明哲).

New amendments introduced also include shortening visa effective date for Chinese visitors for plastic surgery or health checks from six months to three months, while the duration of stay will remain the same at 15 days.

The changes were probably recommended to solve the abuse of health and plastic surgery visas by Chinese visitors, said Chiu Pin-chi (邱品齊), director of China Medical University Hospital's Center for Cosmetic Plastic Surgery.

It is easier for Chinese visitors to obtain plastic surgery and health check visas, but there were numerous records in the past of Chinese people evading authorities or caught prostituting themselves upon entering the country on these visas, said Chiu.

Another plastic surgeon director Yu-pin Su (蘇毓彬) from Chicing Plastic Surgery also evaluated the impact on the beauty industry was limited because most plastic surgeries can be completed within one week to 10 days.

Based on Article 12 of the current regulation, any person presently involved in China's Communist Party, military or other political institutions visa application can be denied or revoked, but the scope proposed in a new bill has expanded to include anyone that has been appointed or involved in any of those positions before.

The draft also suggests regulations of Chinese students studying in Taiwan to return to the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Education.

The draft will be open to public opinion for two months, with the final deadline for submissions set as June 12, 2017.