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Mainland tourists bring Taiwan over 11 bln USD

TAIPEI, May 14 -- Tourists from the Chinese mainland have brought 355.1 billion new Taiwan dollars (11.78 billion U.S. dollars) to Taiwan in the past six years, the island's executive authority said on Wednesday.

Taiwan opened its doors to mainland tourists in 2008.

Since then up to the end of March this year, the number of group visitors from the mainland reached 7,039,000, said Jiang Yi-hua, head of Taiwan's executive body.

Jiang said cross-Strait cooperation had deepened during the six-year period, including ten rounds of cross-Strait talks and the signing of 21 agreements.

He also expressed hope to further boost peaceful development of cross-Strait relations.

According to Jiang, the number of weekly passenger flights has increased to 828 since 2009 when regular flights between both sides began.

As of March, the number of cross-Strait passenger flights surpassed 209,000, carrying 35.24 million people, and air freight across the Strait exceeded 733,000 tonnes.