When Pakistan Shocked China

Chinese people face no visa-related issue while entering Pakistan. However, the process will not be so hazard-free in the coming days, as the South Asian country has tightened visa policy for Chinese nationals.
The Pak Interior Ministry recently issued new guidelines, tightening visa issuance – especially business and work visas – for Chinese citizens. As per new guidelines, Chinese nationals – seeking business visas for Pakistan – will have to show an invitation from a body recognised by Pakistani missions in China. And those invitations should be certified and endorsed by government recognised chambers of commerce and industry. Moreover, Chinese people will require a letter from commercial attaches and other designated Pakistani officers posted abroad for the promotion of business activities. Then only, they will receive visas.
The Pak ministry also announced that regional passport offices would not be allowed to grant long-term visa extensions for Chinese nationals already in Pakistan. All cases of extension to business visas will now be dealt with at Pakistan’s immigration headquarters in Islamabad.
The Interior Ministry further authorised Pakistani embassies and missions in China to issue only one-year multiple-entry work visas for Chinese nationals arriving in Pakistan to work on different projects.


Interestingly, Islamabad tightened the visa policy just a month after Islamic State (IS) terrorists kidnapped and killed two Chinese nationals in Pakistan’s Balochistan Province. Beijing reacted sharply to this incident, asking Islamabad to ensure security of the Chinese nationals staying in the country. In response to Beijing’s strong reaction, the Nawaz Sharif government decided to tighten visa rules for the Chinese people. Prime Minister Sharif assured the top political leadership in Beijing that his government would ensure the security of Chinese citizens staying in Pakistan.
However, the Pak government refused to take responsibility of the two slain Chinese workers, arguing that terrorists targeted them only because they were promoting Christianity in Balochistan. But, China, which was not satisfied with Pakistan’s explanation, made clear that it would never tolerate such arguments.
Meanwhile, Pakistan’s latest move surprised not only China, but also the global community. Experts opine that Pakistan has made it difficult for the Chinese people to enter the country and it cannot be the way to resolve a sensitive issue.

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