The U.S. Travel Association commended the addition of Taiwan to the U.S. Visa Waiver Program on Oct. 2.
According to projections by U.S. Travel, the number of Taiwanese travelers to the U.S. could reach a total of 346,000 in 2013 due to the Visa Waiver Program and could boost spending by $1.3 million and support 22,500 American jobs. Compared to 2011, that would be an additional 55,500 visitors, $213 million spending and 2,800 U.S. jobs.
Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano announced the news at the Travel and Tourism Conference, as part of the State Department's Global Business Conference Series.
“There's a strong possibility that adding Taiwan to the Visa Waiver Program will double the growth rate in arrivals in less than one year,” said Roger Dow, president and CEO of the U.S. Travel Association. “Expansion of the Visa Waiver Program spurs increased international visitation, which has a direct economic impact on the U.S. economy. I applaud Secretary Napolitano for this announcement, and encourage Congress to work with the Administration to pass legislation that will allow additional countries that could bring additional spending to the U.S. — such as Poland and Brazil — to be added in the near future.”