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November 22, 2019

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Foreigners offer suggestions on city future

Foreigners in Shanghai want hospital registration and school admission made easier, according to suggestions made at a Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference meeting yesterday.

More than 100 consular officials, representatives of sister cities and foreign chambers of commerce, Magnolia Prize winners, foreign-invested enterprises and foreign experts and scholars gave their views on the city’s future at a CPPCC Shanghai Committee briefing.

Noyan Rona, a honorary citizen of Shanghai and chief representative of the Turkish Garanti Bank Shanghai Representative Office, said that although the city is increasingly open to foreigners, they still meet problems in their daily lives. It is still difficult and expensive for foreigners to seek medical services, he said.

“An appointment for many hospitals’ expert outpatient services can be made online with Chinese people’s ID number. But foreigners’ passport numbers don’t work. So many use their Chinese friends’ ID numbers to see a doctor. And some children with foreign passports face the same problem.”

Dimitri Lavillette, a principal investigator at the Institut Pasteur of Shanghai, Chinese Academy of Sciences, voiced his concern about the difficulty of schooling for foreign students.

He said many foreign scientists live alone in China and most of their children stay in their home countries because of the difficulty of admission to public schools in the city.

Other suggestions cover easier market entry and more cooperation with China.

“I’m sure that the Yangtze River Delta integration strategy can be a big success by enhancing connectivity to adjacent foreign regions, including South Korea,” said Choi Youngsam, consulate-general of the Republic of Korea in Shanghai. “I do expect you will continue to support expanding shipping and airlines connecting the cities of the Yangtze River Delta to South Korea.”

Fang Huiping, the Shanghai committee’s vice chairman, gave a report on the panel’s work to give foreigners a better understanding of its functions.

Dong Yunhu, chairman of the committee, said Shanghai will launch wide international cooperation, promote reform and opening-up, continue to prepare for a high-quality China International Import Expo, strive to raise core competitiveness and build itself into a socialist modern and international metropolis through a more open market, more active innovation and a more inclusive commercial ecology.

He said the city’s growth can never be separated from the support of consulates in Shanghai and foreign friends, and said the committee will continue to listen to opinions and suggestions from different parties to contribute to the city’s construction.




 

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