Beijing has allowed Chinese citizens to begin using Taiwan as a transit point for onward international flights. Last week, China's Taiwan Affairs Office said passengers flying from Nanchang, Kunming Changshui and Chongqing would be allowed to transit through Taipei Taoyuan International Airport before flying on to a third destination.

Reuters reports the two sides have been discussing the transit plan for some time amid indications the new move could prove highly beneficial to Taiwanese carriers such as China Airlines (CI, Taipei Taoyuan), EVA Air (BR, Taipei Taoyuan), and TransAsia Airways (GE, Taipei Sung Shan) among others.

Mao Zedong's Communists took control of the Chinese mainland in 1949 pushing Chiang Kai Shek's Nationalists onto the island of Formosa, now Taiwan. As such, China regards Taiwan as a renegade province to be unified with the rest of the country, by force if necessary, while Taiwan insists on its right to be a self-governing entity.