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China Simplifies Border Entry, Exit Formalities
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All Chinese citizens, including Taiwan residents, will be able to enter China without filling forms from Jan. 1, 2007, the Ministry of Public Security has announced.



"All Chinese citizens including mainland residents, Taiwanese and overseas Chinese will not be required to fill entry registration cards at border checkpoint. This will greatly shorten the processing time," said a spokesman for the ministry.


The card includes personal information such as name, gender, birth date, passport number, purpose of visit and passport issue place.


The ministry has operated entry and exit card procedures since March 1976. However, the rapid increase in international travelers has put enormous pressure on border checkpoints.


China recorded more than 302 million entries and exits last year, including more than 40 million foreigners, up 19.9 percent from 2004, and almost 262 million Chinese citizens, up 8.42 percent.


China's booming economy and deepening reforms were making overseas travel easier for Chinese, he said.


Mainland residents bound for Hong Kong and Macao special autonomous regions and Chinese tourist groups to foreign countries, together accounting for two thirds of border crossings in 2005, are not required to fill entry or exit cards.


(Xinhua News Agency December 21, 2006)


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