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Joy as end to Taiwan trip deadlock in sight
By Cao Desheng (China Daily)
Updated: 2005-05-23 05:05

Beijing local Zhou Feng was all smiles when he learned that mainland residents might soon be able to visit Taiwan as tourists.

The 62 year old said it was his life-long dream to go sightseeing on the island.

"I'm ready to take my wife to visit the long dreamt-of landscapes of the island, such as picturesque Alishan Mountain and Sun Moon Lake (Riyuetan), which we've only seen in books or magazines," Zhou said.

The announcement of possible tourism to the island from the mainland was made on Friday by the China National Tourist Administration. The new policy has given heart to all those mainland travellers wanting to see the island, not just Zhou.

Ms Yang, 39, also from Beijing, is a fan of late Taiwanese singer Teresa Teng.

Yang said she wanted to visit Teng's tomb in Taipei County as soon as travel to Taiwan was available.

A young woman who gave her surname as Li said she was planning her honeymoon and dreamt of having it in the island province.

"It would be an unforgettable experience to spend those sweet days on the picturesque island if I was in the first batch of mainland tourists to Taiwan," Li told reporters when went to enquire at China Youth Tourist Services about the possibility on Saturday.

Her dreams might soon come true soon as Beijing has called for talks on the issue with Taiwan's tourism authorities and promised the new policy would be introduced in a planned, gradual and orderly manner.

Taiwan's tourism industry welcomed the announcement, but the decision to open up cross-Straits tourism lies with Taiwan authorities. The island has rules restricting mainland visitors.

(China Daily 05/23/2005 page1)

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