PM Imran launches e-visa policy for 175 countries

New visa regime aimed to boost tourism, investment

News Desk March 14, 2019

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Prime Minister Imran Khan has said that the country opening its doors to the world is a manifestation of a new confidence that the security situation has drastically changed and Pakistan is now secure.

He made the remarks while addressing a ceremony to roll out the government's new e-visa policy at the Prime Minister's Office in Islamabad on Thursday.

"To embark on the longest journey you must take the first step," he said, adding that, the government implementing this new visa policy was the start of tourism industry flourishing in the country.

He said scope for the tourism industry in Pakistan was vast, adding that after the elections in India, the country would have good relations with all of its regional neighbours.

"Foreign investment would only come to Pakistan if businesses know they can make money here," the prime minister added.

Earlier, Minister of State for Interior Shehryar Afridi revealed the details of the “the new and revolutionary visa regime which would pave the way for opening up of Pakistan to foreign investment and tourism”.

He said that the online visa system automate the entire visa process, allowing citizens complete their applications from anywhere in the world.

Salient features

Under the new visa regime, Pakistani missions abroad will grant three-month e-visas to foreigners in 175 countries within a processing time of 7-10 working days.

In the initial phase, citizens of United Kingdom, United Arab Emirates, Malaysia, China, and Turkey in who would be granted e-visas in 7-10 working days.

-Foreign nationals of Indian origin will also be allowed to avail the facility of visa on arrival for religious tourism

-Multiple business visas for five years shall be granted within 24 hours subject to provision of the required documents

-Visas to foreign journalists shall be cleared on priority upon recommendation of the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting

-Average visa fee has been reduced by 22 to 65 per cent

-30-day multiple entry visas for nationals of Bahrain, Malaysia, Oman, Qatar Saudi Arabia, Turkey and UAE

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