Hongkong to allow Taiwan visitors longer stays

16 Apr 2009

Improvement in the relationship between China and Taiwan intensifies with Hongkong easing travel curbs on Taiwan visitors from next year.

Donald Tsang, Hongkong chief executive, said in his annual policy address that the immigration department would lift existing restrictions limiting them to two entry applications each within any 30-day period. He said they would also be allowed to stay up to 30 days from the previous 14 days, provided they held certain visas.

The age-old Cross-Straits problem has been noticeably easing since President Ma Ying-jeou of the powerful Kuomintang Party assumed office last year. In July, the first regular non-stop flights between the two countries after 60 years went ahead.

Previously, Taiwan travellers had to enter China via Hongkong.

Tsang said the latest measures would “provide greater convenience for frequent business visitors and tourists from Taiwan”. In addition, the government, he reported, would look at ways to foster closer economic and trade ties with the island nation.

Margie T Logarta

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