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Friday, September 4, 2015
Nazri: Scrutiny of visa application service charges in China needed
KUALA LUMPUR: The Finance Ministry needs to look into the issue of high service charges being imposed by the one-stop centre for Malaysian visas in China, said Tourism Minister Datuk Seri Nazri Aziz (pic).
"How can a private company doing outsourced work get more money than the Government?" said Nazri on Thursday.
Tourism Malaysia chairman Wee Choo Keong in a blog post Thursday said Chinese tourists had to pay a RMB80 (RM53) visa application fee to the Malaysian Government, and another RMB120 (RM79) in service fees to SPPV One Stop Centre.
However, Nazri said outsourcing was necessary due to China's size.
"If we (only) have our consulates giving consular services in Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou, it is going to be a little difficult," said Nazri.
He added that with the implementation of temporary social visit passes or a visa-free period for 15 days beginning October, Chinese tourists would not need to pay any visa fees.
"These one-stop centres cannot charge them," said Nazri, but added that other categories of travellers such as students still required visas.
"Those coming in for other reasons need visas and can use the one-stop centres," said Nazri.
He added that he would be appealing to Home Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi to allow for groups of less than 20 tourists to be exempted from current visa requirements.
Currently, visa-free travel will only be granted to groups of 20 tourists or more.