TAO claims 22,000 applied for new card

RESIDENCY::The Taiwan Affairs Office reiterated that the card would make life more easy for Taiwanese living in China, while accusing the DPP of slandering its efforts

By Chung Li-hua and Jake Chung  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

Thu, Sep 13, 2018 - Page 3

About 22,000 Taiwanese in China have applied for the new residency cards introduced last month by Beijing, China’s Taiwan Affairs Office spokesman An Fengshan (安峰山) told a news conference in Beijing yesterday.

The collection of personal data and fingerprints is common in the digital age, An said, in response to the question whether the acts are aimed at obtaining the personal information of Taiwanese residents.

“We collect the same information from Chinese nationals applying for personal identification documents,” An added.

The use of integrated chips and fingerprints aim to ensure ease of use, and prevent other people from using the cards, he said.

Taiwanese who have the cards can more easily board trains or airplanes, check-in at hotels and use financial services, An said.

The chips are produced using advanced technology and would protect all personal information recorded on them, he said.

Cardholders would be able to find jobs, enroll in social security and access the public housing fund, An said.

The fund is provided by the Chinese government, and both the individual and their employer contribute toward the fund saved in an account that can be used when renovating or buying homes, he said.

Cardholders would also be eligible for other public services and benefits, which would put them on equal footing with Chinese nationals, An added.

“Regardless of what China has done for Taiwanese, the Democratic Progressive Party tries to slander our efforts and attempt to prevent them; such is the nature of the party,” he said.

The card is an official document providing convenience for Taiwanese who want to study in China, while the Taiwan Compatriot Travel Document would be used for travel, An said.

The two documents’ functions would not overlap, nor would the residency card supersede the travel document or affect the rights afforded to Taiwanese entering China using the travel document, An said.