But the DPP authority has politicized mainland visitors in the past two years, considering their trips to Taiwan as the mainland’s political and intelligence penetration. An increasing number of mainland tourists have been investigated and obstructed; some were even traced and monitored. As the island’s “presidential election” approaches, it is highly possible that Taiwan secessionist forces will stir things up using mainland visitors.
Mainland tourists have made up around 25 percent of Taiwan’s inbound tourists and brought great wealth to the island. But public opinion controlled by the pro-secession camp, and the DPP authority itself, has never shown any gratitude. The DPP has constantly incited anti-mainland sentiment, largely infecting ordinary Taiwan people’s attitudes toward mainland visitors. Complaints from mainland tourists about the unfriendly treatment they received in Taiwan have increased drastically.
The mainland’s decision to suspend the program demonstrates the government’s responsibility for tourists’ personal safety during the special period. Individual visitors are more prone to various attacks than those in tour groups. And they may fall into the trap set by Taiwan secessionist forces to undermine cross-Straits relations. Such preventive measures are quite necessary in the current situation.
The program was launched to benefit local economy, but the island’s attitude has made it meaningless. The Tsai authority needs to bear the consequences of its frantic political line.