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The government has announced to increase the maximum of Chinese tourists from 5,000 to 8,000 people from November 21 to February 29, 2016.

Legislator Ye Yi-jin criticizes this policy and requests to reduce the number of Chinese tourists during the holidays to maintain the quality of domestic tourism, and was strongly opposed by Legislator Chen Xue-sheng who says, “Taiwanese people rarely go out anyways."

Liberty Times reports, on November 30, the Tourism Bureau under the Ministry of Transportation and Communications (MOTC) announced the new tourism policy at congress. Legislators questioned the Minster of Transportation and Communications, Chen Jian-Yu, that the ministry promised to regulate the total number of Chinese tourists, but recently it declared to adjust the maximum number of these tourists per day, which may have a major impact on the domestic tourism industry.

Ye says that this sudden announcement made by Tourism Bureau will, if Chinese tourists stay in Taiwan for an average of eight days, attract 3,000 Chinese tourists to Taiwan each day until February, 2016 and the accumulated number of Chinese visitors will reach a total of 24,000 people.

“Don’t the Taiwanese need to celebrate New Year’s Eve, Chinese New Year and the 228 holiday? Why don’t we all just stay home and let the Chinese people have all the fun in Taiwan,” says Ye.

Watchout reports, Ye stresses that she is a lawmaker of the Taiwanese congress and her job is to protect the domestic tourism industry for the people.

China Times reports, director of the Tourism Bureau, Xie Wei-jun, says that the adjustment of the maximum of Chinese tourists visiting Taiwan during high season is based on estimations from last year’s record.

Workers in tourism industry say that until November 30, the National Immigration Agency has not changed related application rules regarding Chinese people coming to Taiwan and the maximum is still 8,000 people.

Minister of Transportation and Communications, Chen Jian-yu, says that the ministry increases the maximum only during high season in response to the requests of the Executive Yuan and the General Chamber of Commerce of the Republic of China. The normal quota of 5,000 per day will be resumed right after the high season.

The legislators once asked the MOTC to withdraw the new policy, but the ruling and opposite parties came to a resolution to restrain the new policy from three consecutive holidays, including New Year’s Day (three days), Chinese New Year (eight days) and the 228 holiday (three days) in order to avoid leaving out either tourists from other countries and domestic tourists.

Translated by June
Edited by Olivia Yang