Travel to China – Security Issues

The entry ban and exit ban have caused chaos in China’s stock markets and the effects could last well into next year. The stock markets were falling by hundreds of billions of dollars before the entrance ban was lifted. The exit ban will likely have the same effect on China’s markets. That is why now is the time to start preparing for a trip to China.

Travel to China

The new U.S. administration has implemented a variety of measures in response to the Chinese government’s actions. The restrictions on exports came quickly and are beginning to impact the U.S. At present, the U.S. customs administration has issued an advisory concerning the implementation of the new restrictions. The advisory informs American citizens of all travel restrictions that have been imposed by the Chinese government. This advisory also advises Chinese nationals of all restrictions currently imposed on American citizens as well as those imposed on all foreigners who may wish to travel to China. These restrictions are not only in response to the current Chinese government’s actions, but also to the previous Chinese government.

China has previously imposed trade restrictions on certain products that had been exported to the U.S., Korea, South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, and Vietnam. In addition, China has restricted travel to some regions of its neighbors, such as the Philippines. The July 4th travel advisory also included a section that described the actions that were being taken in response to the Philippines’ agreement with China on purchasing large quantities of Vietnamese oil. On July 6th, the South Korean government announced that it was recalling its ambassador to China, due to the controversial agreement reached between the two countries. Taiwan’s representative was also recalled.

The three-day travel ban imposed an entry ban on any foreigner intending to travel to China. This ban affects both tourists and non-Chinese citizens. Additionally, individuals who have had any contact with the fraudulent services of forced child labor or other labor exploited by unscrupulous brokers will not be permitted to enter China. Individuals traveling to China who are suspected of involvement with either labor abuse or child labor will not be allowed to leave the country. The travel advisory also specifies that all passengers leaving China who are carrying falsified documents will be returned or detained.

Many foreigners worry that they will fall foul of Chinese authorities and face imprisonment if they fail to report to their tour operators or local Chinese law enforcement officials when they return from China. However, this is not true. The State Department reiterates, “If a Chinese citizen does not report to Chinese authorities, they may face arrest and prosecution under the laws of their own country.” In practice, there have been no cases of foreign nationals who have faced prison for absence from Chinese authorities.

Another fear that some travelers have is that they will be interned in a prison-like prison once they return to China. Although this is not possible, Chinese authorities may detain or severely punish anyone who attempts to flee to another country, while including certain crimes that could lead to prison for an extended period of time. In practice, however, Chinese authorities only tend to prosecute crimes that occur outside of China.

The United States State Department and the United Kingdom’s Foreign Office both advise against traveling to China due to the likelihood of visa restrictions being applied. These visa restrictions are in place due to China’s continued growth as a major global economic force. The Chinese government requires all travelers originating in China to have a visa before entering the country. If a traveler does not have a visa, they will be required to exit the country through another exit point.

Some other travel advisories include the following: American citizens are prohibited from traveling to China unless they can obtain a special travel waiver from the Department of State. British citizens are prohibited from traveling to China unless they can obtain a written permission from the UK High Commission. Canadian citizens are prohibited from traveling to China unless they can obtain a valid visa. Travel to China is considered extremely dangerous and travelers should be alert for police harassment, theft, or any other type of criminal activity. Chinese officials tend to severely penalize individuals who travel outside of their country.