Taiwanese passport holders will be able to enter the Cayman Islands without the need to first obtain travel visas.
Now, Cayman Islands Premier McKeeva Bush wants to extend that possibility to Chinese nationals.
“The next stage is to conduct a similar agreement with China, which is now in discussion also,” Mr. Bush said.
Mr. Bush’s comments came during a Friday meeting of the Legislative Assembly. They were not contained in the text of the speech to the assembly that was later distributed to local media.
The Cayman Islands Cabinet has already approved amendments to Immigration Regulations that allow Taiwanese passport holders to enter the territory without a visitor’s visa.
The amendment is the first phase of an enhanced bilateral visa-waiver agreement between the Cayman Islands and Taiwan, according to Premier Bush. The terms of this negotiation were initiated by the Taiwanese Representative office in London, which currently has visa-waiver agreements with some 114 countries, including the United Kingdom and most of its Overseas Territories.
Mr. Bush recently made an unofficial visit to Taiwan to discuss business opportunities between the two jurisdictions and said he hopes that this agreement will enhance economic, political and cultural links.
“It is expected to augment tourism and business development possibilities, as Taiwanese business people conducting business regionally will now have ease of access to travel to the Cayman Islands,” Mr. Bush said. “The third benefit is for Caymanian and Taiwanese students, who will have an opportunity to participate in reciprocal exchange programmes and further enrich their cultural appreciation, which is more and more a requirement in our globalised environment.”
Caymanians who hold British passports already enjoy visa-waiver treatment for visiting Taiwan through the agreement between Taiwan and the UK.
“However, this agreement would afford persons who hold Caymanian passports easier access to this vibrant point of interest in the Far East, once the agreement is reciprocated by Taiwan, as is expected,” according to a statement from the Premier’s Office.