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Taiwan to reassess visa-free entry for Filipinos July 2018



Taipei Economic and Cultural Office (TECO) in the Philippines said the reassessment on their trial based visa-free policy for Filipinos is set on July 2018.

According to Taiwan Representative to the Philippines Gary Song-Huann Lin, should results show outstanding evaluation on Filipino visitors to Taiwan, the visa-free treatment would continue.

“If the results are positive and everything goes well, it will resume," he told reporters in a recent interview.

“If the outcome is really good or not many Filipinos are breaking the law, overstaying in Taiwan or involved in drug trafficking or human trafficking then my office, we can assure you, we'll advise our government to consider the continuation of the visa-free treatment," he added.

So far, Lin is optimistic that the Philippines will be given a good rating. "So far so good, we've never heard nor encounter any Filipino breaking Taiwan's law or have overstayed or anything like that," he said.

Filipinos were granted visa-free entry to the Republic of China (Taiwan) not exceeding 14 days from Nov. 1, 2017 until trial period ends on July 31, 2018.

Per TECO, this initiative is part of Taiwan’s efforts under their “New Southbound Policy” to promote more people-to-people exchange between Taiwan and the Philippines.

Request for reciprocity

Lin said "as friends," Taiwan would like to ask the government for visa-free reciprocity.

"If you introduce visa-free privileges to Taiwan and complement it by our investment protection and promotion agreement this will be excellent for (Philippines') economic development," he said.

Lin said that compared to other Southeast Asian countries like Vietnam, Taiwanese investment to the country was “far too low."

"If you introduce visa-free this will be excellent not only for Taiwan but also for your own attraction of foreign investment," he said.

Joyce Ann L. Rocamora / PNA