FILE PHOTO: Taiwan’s President Tsai Ing-wen speaks during her visit in Port-au-Prince, Haiti July 13, 2019. REUTERS/Andres Martinez Casares
TAIPEI (Reuters) – Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen on Thursday called Beijing’s ban on individual tourists to the island a “major strategic mistake” amid heightened tension with giant neighbor China.
China is using mainland tourists as “political tools” and the move would create antipathy in Taiwanese people, Tsai told reporters in Taipei.
China will stop issuing individual travel permits for Taiwan to Chinese citizens from Aug 1, its culture and tourism ministry said on Wednesday, citing the state of ties with the island. The move could deal a blow to Taiwan’s tourism industry.
Reporting By Yimou Lee; editing by Richard Pullin