Lithuania – China Suspends Visa Issuance for Lithuanian Citizens
The Lithuanian authorities have announced that the Chinese mission in Vilnius has decided to halt the issuance of visas to citizens of Lithuania. Gabrielius Landsbergis, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania, confirmed the news, stating that they were informed on the matter by the Chinese authorities.
Interestingly, the Lithuanian National Television and Radio reported that Lithuania has not been informed of the duration of the visa suspension either, leaving the country in the dark about what might have pushed China to take this decision.
This is not the first time that China has suspended visa issuance for Lithuanians. The same source explained that previously, on November 21, the Chinese mission in the country decided to halt the issuance of visas to citizens of Lithuania temporarily. Back then, the visas were suspended due to the country’s decision to open the Taiwanese representative office in Vilnius. However, officials from both countries were holding talks aimed at normalising the diplomatic relations between Lithuania and China.
During the time that visa issuance is suspended, citizens of Lithuania will not be able to apply for the document and consequently will not be able to enter China.
On a positive note, while China has suspended visa issuance for Lithuanian citizens, the case is completely different for citizens of some other European Union/Schengen Area countries. China decided to drop the visa requirement for all passport holders of France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, and Spain on December 1, 2023. Since then, citizens of these countries have been able to enter China visa-free for stays of up to 15 days without having to undergo visa procedures.
Furthermore, China is also planning to drop the visa requirements for some other countries. Just recently, China announced plans aimed at facilitating travel from Switzerland and Ireland. While no decision has been made yet, it is expected that citizens of these two countries might soon be able to enter China without a visa.
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