The Taiwan News reports that a majority of Chinese tourists have enjoyed their stay in Taiwan:
Chinese tourists who have visited Taiwan since July 4 have given an average approval rating of 91 percent to tourism in Taiwan, the Ministry of Transportation and Communications (MOTC) reported yesterday
Although flights run at an 85% capacity, the number of Chinese tourists visiting Taiwan has been less than expected by Taiwanese officials. Taiwan’s Central News Agency reported that the Minister of Transportation and Communications Mao Chi-kuo stated that:
“This could be seen as quite successful, although only between 20 per cent and 30 per cent of the passengers have been Chinese tourists, a ratio lower than the original expectations.
The MOTC believes that the lower expectations are a result of legal and political barriers.
China also has problems with some of Taiwan’s restrictions, Mao went on, such as Taiwan’s requirement that Chinese tourists provide certificates of being either at school, in work or in possession of suitable funds.”
Critics of Ma have been quick, however, to use the lower-than-expected Chinese tourists to highlight the administration’s mishandling of cross-strait relations. Shiue Yih-Chearng writes in an editorial for the Taipei Times:
…direct cross-strait chartered flights have failed to produce the expected tourism boom…
All this has given the impression that political motives are being given far greater weight than economic ones. Failure to propose a visionary economic development blueprint, rising commodity prices, soaring oil prices, rising unemployment, the growing income disparity and the massive stock market losses have forced Ma to admit that his “6-3-3” economic check has bounced and that the targets will not be achieved until 2016.