Saipan – The CNMI House of Representatives is taking action on so-called “birth tourism” on the islands following another national media coverage of the issue involving Chinese tourists traveling to Saipan for the sole purpose of giving birth to automatic U.S. citizens.
The Saipan Tribune reported that House Speaker Joseph Deleon Guerrero assigned yesterday the committees on Tourism and Federal and Foreign Relations to review and recommend action, if any, on the ABC News reported yesterday on Saipan’s birth tourism, three months after they sent an investigative news crew to the island.
The network’s “Inside Saipan’s Industry of ‘American-Born Chinese Babies” says Saipan is experiencing a baby boom, referring to a substantial increase in the number of babies born to Chinese mother—from only eight in 2009 to 282 in 2012. In 2009, the U.S. government allowed a U.S. visa-free visit to the CNMI of Chinese and Russian tourists.
The ABC News story did point out that birth tourism is not illegal but there are critics, including Rep. Steve King of Iowa.