Fri, Feb 10, 2012 - Page 2 News List

Taiwan to allow individual tourists from more cities

Staff Writer, with CNA

Taiwan will open its doors to individual tourists from eight more Chinese cities, but the daily quota is not likely to increase, the Tourism Bureau said yesterday.

After a two-day meeting between the Taipei-based Taiwan Strait Tourism Association and the Beijing-headquartered Cross-Strait Tourism Association that started on Wednesday in Hong Kong, the bureau said new measures for the Free Independent Traveler (FIT) program remain under discussion.

The program, which was launched in June last year, allows up to 500 independent travelers per day from Beijing, Shanghai and Xiamen to visit Taiwan.

According to bureau statistics, an average of 184 Chinese nationals per day have taken advantage of the program since the agreement took effect.

Despite declining to reveal the names of the eight cities, Tourism Bureau Deputy Director-General David Hsieh (謝勤益) said those with more developed economies and established travel industries were more likely to get picked to be included in the program.

Mainland Affairs Council spokesman Liu Te-shun (劉德勳) said after the meeting that differences remained over which cities to include, so more discussions were needed.

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