Easy visa policy, smooth processing delights business community

Pakistani women appointed in China Embassy’s consular section

Zubair Qureshi

A number of visa applicants have expressed their delight at smooth visa processing and easy policy at the Chinese embassy. While talking to Pakistan Observer here on Thursday representatives of the business community said that they were happy to find out female Pakistani employees receiving them in the Consular Section of the Chinese Embassy here in Islamabad, which makes some applicants, especially those Urdu-speaking applicants feel pleasantly surprised.
Yang Lianchun, Director of the Consular Section, said that more Pakistani staff have been hired in his section and taken responsibilities of facilitating the applicants, such as frequently helping to bridge the gap in language barriers for Urdu-speaking applicants. “All of our consular officers speak English only. When we have interviews with Urdu-speaking applicants who visit China for the first time, we will sometimes reject them as we can’t make sure of their visit purposes due to language barriers. However, Pakistani employees can not only help lessen the applicants’ emotional anxiety but solve the problem easily.” He said.
Hiring more Pakistani staff in the Consular Section is actually under the instructions of Chinese Ambassador Yao Jing. Since his arrival the Ambassador has specially taken steps to facilitate Chinese visa application. His constant meetings with the chambers of commerce and industries won huge support from the local business community. He always said that promoting mutual understanding, exchanges and cooperation between the two peoples is the key point for developing the all-weather strategic partnership of cooperation between China and Pakistan. He stressed that all consular officers of the Embassy must enhance their awareness of service to make visa applicants feel our warmth and friendliness, and make it easier for Pakistani friends to get Chinese visas.
Since April 1 this year, the Chinese Embassy has implemented new policy for F and M visas. According to the new rules, those applicants who have visited China more than 3 times since January 1, 2016, who work for the companies registered in local Chambers, or who hold passports with marks of Government Officer or Government Employee are exempted from submitting barcode invitation letters.
These invitation letters are usually issued by Chinese local governments or big enterprises and difficult to obtain. According to statistics, the visa issuance volume from April 1 to June 15 rose 11% over the same period of the previous year, among which the business visa volume reaches around 15,000, a growth of 19%. Faisal Saeed, a businessman from Faisalabad who has just come back to Pakistan from China (Qinghai) International Carpet Exhibition, said that the new policy made it easier for Pakistani businessmen to obtain Chinese visas and would yield more economic benefits. “To my delight, I was granted a multiple-entry visa with a validity period of one year. It is because I have been to China many times and built up a very good visa record.” He added.
The Ambassador reiterated that the Embassy processed visas for Pakistanis on the basis of international conventions and the principle of reciprocity. “As a major pilot project under One Belt and Road Initiative, the CPEC is the most important and best performing project. We’ll further ease our visa policy to contribute more to the development of the CPEC.” He believed that China’s easing visa policy would facilitate bilateral trade and help address the problem of trade imbalance.

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