Turkey to include Taiwan in e-visa system: ministry

By Shih Hsiu-chuan  /  Staff reporter

Fri, May 03, 2013 - Page 3

Turkey is to become the 133th country or region to grant Taiwan visa facilitation after agreeing to include Taiwan in its e-visa system on May 15, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Simon Ko (柯森耀) said yesterday.

Reciprocally, the Taiwanese government will extend landing visa privileges to Turkish citizens, effective on the same date, Ko told a news conference.

The government welcomed the visa facilities and said it believed that the e-visa system would facilitate people-to-people exchanges between the two countries and enhance bilateral relations in areas of trade and commerce, tourism, academia and culture, Ko said.

Ko said the agreement on the facilitation of the issuance of visas saw the results of efforts by both sides over the years come to fruition.

Despite the progress, the ministry yesterday had few details to offer as to how it has proceeded with its long-stated goal to open a representative office in Istanbul, one of Turkey’s biggest cities, reportedly hampered by intervention from China.

David Wang (王建業), director of the ministry’s Department of West Asian and African Affairs, said the ministry has been taking one step at a time developing bilateral relations in a steady manner.

Under Turkey’s e-visa system, Republic of China passport holders can apply for a single-entry visa for a stay of up to 30 days at a cost of US$20.

The current application fee for a single-entry visa to Turkey is NT$1,800 (US$61) and NT$6,000 for a multiple-entry visa.

To use the e-visa system, a visitor is required to hold a passport that is valid for at least six months.

People traveling on e-visas to Turkey can enter the country via any of its three main international airports, Esenboga International Airport in Ankara, and Ataturk International Airport and Sabina Gokcen International Airport in Istanbul, the ministry said.