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HK confirms extension of Individual Visit Scheme
www.chinaview.cn 2003-12-31 06:24:35

     HONG KONG, Dec. 30 (Xinhuanet) -- Hong Kong's Chief Executive Tung Chee Hwa confirmed that citizens in six more cities of Guangdong will join the other 10 Chinese mainland cities to visit Hong Kong as individual visitors.

    The Individual Visit Scheme will be further extended to six Guangdong cities from Jan. 1, Tung Chee Hwa said Tuesday, according to a Hong Kong government press release on Tuesday.

    The six new cities are Shantou, Chaozhou, Meizhou, Zhaoqing, Qingyuan and Yunfu.

    At present, the scheme is implemented in 10 Chinese mainland cities -- Jiangmen, Foshan, Zhongshan, Dongguan, Guangzhou, Zhuhai, Shenzhen, Huizhou, Beijing and Shanghai.

    Residents with permanent household registration in these citiescan apply for an individual visit endorsement from local Public Security Bureau to visit Hong Kong.

    As of Dec. 29, over 650,000 Chinese mainland residents visited Hong Kong under the scheme, spending an estimated 3.5 billion HongKong dollars (450 million US dollars ) here.

    It is believed that the extension will further benefit local tourism, retail and other related industries.

    The HK Tourism Board is working with the travel trade to keep visitors abreast of activities and attractions in the city.

    The Hong Kong Tourism Commission will work with the board and the industry to maintain and enhance quality services and ensure consumer protection for tourists.

    Meanwhile, the Immigration Department will deploy sufficient manpower to cope with the anticipated visitor surge, said the press release. Enditem

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