Thursday, 06 June 2019 11:21

China tightens South Korea visa rules 'after Huawei rebuff' Featured

China tightens South Korea visa rules 'after Huawei rebuff' Pixabay

China has tightened business visa rules for citizens of US ally South Korea, after Seoul chose telecommunications providers other than Huawei for its upcoming network projects.

A report in the Korea Herald claimed the new rules had come in from 1 June and required applicants to submit a detailed itinerary at the time of making the application.

The newspaper said for a 90-day business visa, one needed to submit a schedule for at least 31 days.

For more than two years, the US has been pushing countries it considers allies to ban Huawei from their 5G networks.

The report quoted an official at South Korea's Ministry of Foreign Affairs as saying: “The Chinese Government told us they decided to strengthen the visa process due to frequent discovery of forged documents.

"The Chinese Government added that the measures are only about reinforcing document screening, and that the changes are applicable not only to Koreans, but other nationalities as well."

Last week, South Korean mobile carriers KT and LG Uplus excluded Huawei from their new network projects. KT picked US manufacturer Infinera while LG Uplus also chose a company other than Huawei.

South Koreans living in China were also facing stricter rules on residency requirements, the Korea Herald claimed.

One businessman told the newspaper: "To extend my residence permit, I always used an agency, but now I have to visit the office in person."

China has also been warning its citizens against travelling to the US, because of frequent gun violence, robberies and theft, after Washington placed Huawei on a list that prevents it from buying American components for its products without government approval. The order has been relaxed until August.

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Sam Varghese

Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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