Wed, Jun 28, 2017 - Page 1 News List

Foreign residents will not be charged for e-Gate: NIA

Staff writer, with CNA

Foreign residents in Taiwan can still register for the e-Gate service for free, the National Immigration Agency (NIA) said on Monday, after local media reported otherwise.

The agency made the clarification after media reports said the Ministry of the Interior is drafting new regulations that would impose a fee on inbound foreign nationals, including people from China, Hong Kong and Macau.

Under the draft regulations, the application fee would be NT$3,000 for use of the e-Gate service for a five-year period.

The ministry said it is planning to introduce the NT$3,000 fee to help maintain and expand the e-Gate facility, and to align Taiwan with the practices of other nations.

However, foreign nationals with resident status in Taiwan will not be affected by the draft regulations, the agency said.

The agency added that based on the principle of reciprocity, if other nations do not charge Taiwanese for such services, then Taiwan would not require visitors from that nation to pay the fee.

It cited the example of the US, saying that Taiwan is part of the US Global Entry program, which requires Taiwanese to pay US$100 when using the automated immigration clearance system.

Based on the principle of reciprocity, US passengers applying for the e-Gate service would have to pay NT$3,000.

The e-Gate system, which was implemented at airports and harbors in January 2012, uses facial recognition and fingerprint verification technology to identify travelers leaving and entering the nation.

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