China-Singapore Will Implement Visa Free Agreement For 30 Days At The Beginning Of Next Year
Chinese visa illustration. (Wikimedia Commons/Squishy)

JAKARTA - Singapore and China will enforce a joint visa exemption agreement for 30 days early next year, Singapore's Foreign Ministry said on Thursday, as the two countries agreed to increase trade agreements between them.

"The two countries will draw up details of implementing a joint 30-day visa exemption arrangement and implement it in early 2024," the Singapore Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement.

Previously, Thailand and Malaysia were also known to have exempted visas for Chinese tourists.

Meanwhile, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin confirmed the existence of a joint visa exemption agreement for citizens of the two countries, but did not specify the period of residence.

"Currently, the competent authorities of the two countries are conducting close communication on certain issues," he explained at a press conference.

"Both China and Singapore are looking forward to the initial implementation and the implementation of relevant arrangements," he continued.

Separately, Deputy Prime Minister and Singaporean Finance Minister Lawrence Wong said the exchange of tourists between the two countries was increasing, with flights between the two countries recovering near pre-pandemic levels, reported the main Mandarin newspaper in Singapore, Lianhe Zaobao Thursday.

"The arrangement for joint visa exemption for 30 days between our two countries will also support this progress, which could encourage more personnel exchanges and strengthen the basis of bilateral relations," the newspaper quoted him as saying.

This year, China resumed visa-free for 15 days for Singaporean citizens, more than three years after the visa was suspended due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

"Increasing the China-Singapore Free Trade Agreement (CSFTA) protocol gives Singapore greater market access to the Chinese services sector," said Singapore's Ministry of Trade.

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