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Beijing to let travelers stay visa-free for 3 days

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December 5, 2012 09:20 PM EST | AP


BEIJING — State media say that China will allow most foreign visitors to stay in Beijing for three days without a visa if they are heading on to another country, a policy meant to boost tourism and smooth the way for transiting passengers and business travelers.

The China Daily newspaper said the new rules take effect Jan. 1 and apply to visitors from 45 countries, including Japan, Australia, Singapore, the United States, France, Germany and Argentina.

The report says travelers must have a ticket to a third country to qualify and are forbidden to leave Beijing. It says they also must register with police within 24 hours of arrival.

The official Xinhua News Agency says Beijing receives around 5 million foreign visitors per year.