Taiwan: Individual Chinese tourists to arrive by mid-year

TAINAN - Taiwan President Ma Ying-jeou said he expects the arrival of individual Chinese tourists for self-guided tours in Taiwan by the middle of the year.

Taiwan: Individual Chinese tourists to arrive by mid-year

TAINAN – Taiwan President Ma Ying-jeou said he expects the arrival of individual Chinese tourists for self-guided tours in Taiwan by the middle of the year. Tourism industry representatives from Taiwan and China held a new round of talks in Hong Kong to remove obstacles for the plan.

While receiving a delegation from the medical community in southern Tainan Tuesday afternoon, Mr Ma said the plan for individual mainland Chinese tours in Taiwan can be launched around midyear, though he did not give a specific date.

He said the plan will help bolster Taiwan’s medical tourism industry and beef up the nation’s overall international competitiveness.

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Taiwan now has to compete with Japan, Korea, Singapore, Thailand, India, and mainland China for medical tourism. The self-guided trips by mainland Chinese to Taiwan will not only generate business for the medical community here, but also help prevent the luring of medical experts from Taiwan by medical institutions in China, Ma said.

There are complaints from tour operators and hoteliers in southern Taiwan that no direct flights across the Taiwan Strait reach the Kaohsiung Hsiaokang International Airport because few tour groups from China choose to arrive in or depart from Kaohsiung.

Mr Ma said government agencies have been studying plans to encourage more Chinese tourists to use the aviation facilities in southern Taiwan.

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