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ČR, Japan may sign working holiday agreement for young

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Prague, June 14 (CTK) – The Czech Republic and Japan could sign an agreement allowing young people from both countries to travel to the other one within the “working holiday,” according a proposal the government supported at its meeting on Wednesday.

During their stay, the young people are to be able to work and earn money to cover the costs of their trips.

The Czech Republic has signed similar agreements with Canada, New Zealand, South Korea, Israel and Chile.

At present, when entering the Czech Republic the Japanese are freed from the visa duty for three months if gainful activity is not the purpose of their stay and vice versa for Czechs.

Under the new agreement, there would be the long-term visas thanks to which short-term jobs could be executed in the other country.

The opportunity to travel on a working holiday is to cover the people aged 18-30.

The applicant for the visas must have an arranged return trip or to have enough money for it, a clean criminal record and to fulfil other duties.

“Japan is a touristically attractive country. On the part of the Czech youth, one can expect the interest in using the opportunities the agreement will offer,” the Foreign Ministry said.

“The existing agreements with other countries are widely used by Czech citizens,” it added.

The programme of working holidays is being materialised with Taiwan, but without an agreement.

Talks on the agreement are underway with Argentina, Hong Kong and Australia.

The project was suggested by Japan, the Foreign Ministry said.

It is to enable the traveling to and learning of the other country, but studies are not excluded either, it said.

“In order to prevent any abuse of the system, the agreement includes a clause under which the same person cannot receive the working holiday visas repeatedly,” the ministry said.

In the Czech Republic, the agreement has to be signed by the president and given a consent by both houses of parliament.

It may be signed at the close of June when Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka (Social Democrats, CSSD) is scheduled to visit Japan.

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