Three more measures to ensure the safety of Chinese citizens abroad were introduced by Foreign Minister Wang Yi at a news conference in Beijing on Thursday.[Special coverage]
First, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) is working on drafting legislation on consular protection and assistance. Public consultation will start after the two sessions.
Second, 12308 smartphone app will soon be launched based on the existing WeChat and weibo platforms. People will have more convenient accesses to consular service.
Third, Chinese diplomatic and consular missions around the world will slash consular legalization fees as much as two-thirds starting Friday, to save Chinese citizens and businesses more than 10 million yuan every year.
Last year, over 130 million mainlanders travelled overseas, increasing the work of consulates. The MFA handled more than 70,000 cases and the 12308 hotline handled 170,000 calls. ''Prevention is the best protection,'' Wang said. MFA issued over 1,000 travel advisories last year to reduce Chinese citizens risk exposure before they traveled abroad.