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Pingtan begins issuing port visas to foreigners

( chinadaily.com.cn )

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Pingtan begins issuing port visas to foreigners

An official issues the first port visa to an Australian citizen named Frederick at the Pingtan Aoqian Port, Fujian province, May 3. [Photo/ptnet.cn]

Pingtan Aoqian Port was approved to grant port visas to foreigners as of May 1, according to local public security department.

The first beneficiary of the new policy was an Australian citizen named Frederick, who went to Pingtan for business and applied for a port visa on May 3.

Frederick said that it was extremely convenient and time-saving to apply for the visa at Pingtan port, instead of having to apply at the Chinese embassy in Australia in advance.

A port visa is also called a visa on arrival (VOA). According to related policies, foreigners who arrive in Pingtan at the invitation of a Chinese host for an emergency issue or in travel groups without applying for a visa ahead of time can hand in paperwork at the port visa agency, where they can get a VOA.

The visa for emergency issues is only valid for a maximum of five days, while that for travel groups is valid for 15 days at most.

The policy brings great convenience to foreigners who go to Pingtan for emergency issues or travelling, which is also beneficial for the area's goal of becoming an international tourist destination, said Lin Fei, a local exit-entry official.