1.8 lakh visas issued to Indian citizens by China in 2023

NEW DELHI: The Chinese embassy in India revealed on Friday that over 1,80,000 Chinese visas were issued to Indian citizens in the year 2023. Wang Xiaojian, the spokesperson for the Chinese embassy, shared this information while highlighting the measures taken by the embassy to facilitate travel for Indian citizens to China.
Xiaojian said, “More than 180,000 Chinese Visas have been issued to Indian citizens in 2023! In the past year, Chinese Embassy & Consulates-General in India have taken a package of measures to better facilitate Indian citizens traveling to China, such as online appointment removed, fingerprints exemption and temporary fee reduction.”
The spokesperson expressed hope that India would reciprocate by resuming normal visa channels for Chinese citizens traveling to India.Emphasizing the importance of mutual people-to-people and cultural exchanges between the two nations, Wang Xiaojian urged swift action in this regard.
This development comes against the backdrop of India’s decision to suspend tourist visas for Chinese nationals in 2022, as reported by the International Air Transport Association (IATA). In a circular issued to its member carriers, IATA conveyed that tourist visas issued to Chinese nationals were no longer valid for entry into India.
The circular outlined specific categories of individuals who were exempt from this suspension. Nationals of Bhutan, India, Maldives, and Nepal, passengers with a residence permit issued by India, and those with visas or e-visas issued by India were permitted to enter the country. Additionally, individuals with an overseas citizen of India card or booklet, including Persons of Indian Origin (PIO) cardholders, and those with a diplomatic passport were also allowed entry.
The IATA noted that tourist visas with a validity of 10 years were no longer considered valid for entry into India.
The recent surge in Chinese visas for Indian citizens signals a potential thaw in bilateral relations between the two nations.
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