China, U.S. to reduce mutual restrictions on foreign correspondents

China and the United States have agreed to reduce mutual restrictions on the activities of their foreign news correspondents, Beijing said on Wednesday.

The Chinese Foreign Ministry confirmed an agreement reached before the video conference between U.S.President, Joe Biden and Chinese leader Xi Jinping earlier this week.

According to the deal, journalists will be granted one-year visas and the possibility of entering and leaving the country several times.

Previously, visas were only granted for three months with a single entry.

The dispute escalated after the U.S. government increased pressure on employees of Chinese media in the U.S.

Also China’s repeated expulsions of U.S. journalists and only limited allocation of accreditations.

Foreign Ministry spokesman, Zhao Lijian told the press that new employment visas are also to be issued and applications will be processed accordingly.

He emphasized, that China would only take action if the U.S. implemented its commitments.

China, however, hopes that the three-point agreement reached in several rounds of negotiations will be into practice “as soon as possible.”

The agreement is one of the few concrete advances in the strained relations between the two powers.

The two presidents met for a video conference on Tuesday for the first time since Biden took office in January.

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