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Norway gets the “Nobel” snub in China’s new 3-day visa waiver travel

Excerpt from TimesOfIndia

Dec 09, 2012 9:26 am

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Sad but very real: the role that geopolitics plays in inhibiting travel worldwide.

— Rafat Ali

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China has introduced a visa waiver scheme covering many countries including most of Europe. However, one country not included in this list is Norway. This is seen as a deliberate snub because the Norwegian parliament played a role in the selection of Chinese dissident Liu Xiabao for the Nobel Peace Prize of 2011.

Liu Xia, the wife of Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo, holds a photo of Liu Xiaobo during an interview in Beijing October 3, 2010.

Although the prize is determined independently by the Nobel committee, the Norwegian parliament plays a role in the nominations. After Liu got the prize, an angry China said Norway had hurt Chinese people’ feelings.

The new scheme allows a visitor to stay in China for 72 hours without visa, huge boost to business travelers to Beijing.

FT: When asked why Norway was left off the list, Wang Qin, a senior official at the Beijing government travel administration, did not respond directly but said that some countries were not eligible because their citizens or government were “of low-quality” and “badly behaved”.

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