Chinese banks to come to UK

Chinese banks will be able to apply to set up branches in Britain, Chancellor George Osborne has announced during a visit to the country.

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Boris Johnson and George Osborne are 'yin and yang'

Chancellor George Osborne joked that he and Boris Johnson are like "the yin and the yang" as they both continued their visit to China.

George Osborne said he and Boris Johnson are like "yin and the yang". Credit: Matt Dunham/PA Archive

Asked about the timing of their trips which saw the Chancellor and London Mayor in China at the same time, Mr Johnson joked with Beijing students that they were like a "pair of harmonious doves".

The London Mayor was asked who was in charge and he replied: "We are representing our country. It's a nest of singing birds is how I would describe it. It's total harmony, there's probably some Chinese expression that completely perfectly culminates it."

The Chancellor intervened: "The yin and the yang."

Mr Johnson then turned to a Chinese student, asking: "The yin and the yang. What do you say for a harmonious, sounds like one of those Chinese fireworks, a harmonious dove or something like that? A pair of harmonious doves. What is that in Chinese?"

After she looked back blankly, Mr Osborne said: "I think she likes the yin and yang comparatively."


Osborne signals new UK ties with China

George Osborne will today hail a new era in Britain's relations with China as ministers predicted a massive surge of investment from the Asian economic dynamo to build a new generation of nuclear power stations for the UK.

The Chancellor, who is leading a high-powered ministerial and business delegation to China, will use a keynote speech to students in Beijing to call for the two countries to take the "next big step" in their relationship.


Boris: China visas move a 'welcome step forward'

London Mayor Boris Johnson has praised the move to simplify and speed up visa applications for Chinese nationals as a "welcome step forward".

Mr Johnson, who is also on a trade visit to China, said he was pleased the Government had listened to him on simplifying the visa system for Chinese people.

Mayor of London Boris Johnson is currently on a trade visit to China. Credit: PA Wire

He said: "I'm pleased that the Government has listened to the many voices, mine included, who have called repeatedly for a streamlining and simplification of the Chinese visa system.

"The move will hopefully encourage ever greater numbers of Chinese tourists to London. We should be doing everything we can to drive Chinese visitors to our capital."

China visa changes 'good news for British business'

George Osborne has hailed plans to relax visa rules for Chinese nationals as "good news for British business".

According to the Government, last year 210,000 visas were issued to visiting Chinese nationals who went on to contribute an estimated £300 million to the British economy.

Mr Osborne said:

These changes will streamline and simplify the visa application process for Chinese visitors, while ensuring the system is strong and secure. This is good news for British business and tourism.

Government to relax Chinese visa rules to boost visitors

The Government will relax the visa rules for Chinese nationals coming to Britain in a bid to boost visitor numbers from the economic powerhouse, Chancellor George Osborne has announced.

The Chancellor, who is leading a trade delegation to China, said the changes will "streamline and simplify" the application process for Chinese visitors.

The Government will relax the visa rules for Chinese nationals coming to Britain, George Osborne has announced. Credit: PA Wire

The changes will reduce the need for Chinese visitors to the European Union to submit separate visa applications for Britain, with selected Chinese travel agents able to apply for UK visas by submitting just the EU's Schengen area visa form.

A new 24 hour "super priority" visa service will also become available from next summer next year, with officials also looking to expand a VIP mobile visa service, currently operating in Beijing and Shanghai, to the whole country.

The move comes amid signs of a thaw in relations with Beijing which took a set back last year when David Cameron met the Tibetan spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama.

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