TAIPEI (The China Post/ANN) – Tourism has garnered much international appraisal as well as helped Taiwan join America’s Global Entry program starting in November as a sign of recognition for Taiwan’s tourism quality and friendly travel environment, Vice President Chen Chien-jen (陳建仁) said.

The vice president made the comments on Oct. 27 at the opening of this year’s Taipei International Travel Fair (Taipei ITF, ITF台北國際旅展), with Minister Without Portfolio Chang Ching-sen (張 景森) and TVA Chairwoman Yeh Chu-Lan (葉菊蘭) also in attendance.

The vice president added that Taiwan has been ranked in the Top 10 Must Visit Countries by the English travel website Rough Guides, as well as being recommended by CNN as one of the Top 16 Emerging Attractions to visit. These recognitions are testaments to Taiwan’s lasting good impression in the minds of international tourists, he continued.

In addition, local passport holders will be able to apply for the United States Customs Service that allows speedy entry after Taiwan joins America’s Global Entry program on Nov. 1. At the same time, U.S. citizens will be the first to use Taiwan’s automatic e-Gate system when visiting Taiwan.

Yet, the vice president didn’t deny that Taiwanese tourism is facing immense pressure with the challenge of transformation. He quoted President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) who stated that Taiwan’s tourism revolves around its three goals – build upon each county’s characteristics, adhere to industrial needs, and diversify tourism environment – at the 2017 Tourism Festival Awards ceremony.

With the hopes that the government and local communities can jointly work to raise Taiwan’s service quality, in turn providing a more friendly and warm tourist environment.

Minister Without Portfolio Chang Ching-sen said that tourism is a crucial industry for the country, as well as an important bridge for international communication. In 2030 when the population of international tourists is estimated to reach 1.8 billion, he is optimistic about the future growth of the global tourism industry.

The government aims to continue Taiwan’s tourism expansion and will in the future actively relax the regulations on visas, improve the travel environment for Muslims to Taiwan, expand and encourage travel, and strengthen tourism safety.