Vietnam Prime Minister Mr. Pham Minh Chinh directed relevant authorities on Monday to revise the country’s current visa policy to facilitate the entry of international tourists and simplify administrative processes for granting e-visas.
The Prime Minister’s decision came after Vietnam performed quite poorly in the tourism sector compared to its Southeast Asian neighbors in 2022, even though it was one of the first countries to open up after the pandemic.
He instructed the Ministry of Culture, Sports, and Tourism to prepare a strategy to attract international tourists in the coming year and present it to the government for approval by the end of January.
General Secretary of the Vietnam Tourism Advisory Board, Mr. Hoang Nhan Chinh stated that, like Thailand, Vietnam should also add more names to the list of countries eligible for Visa waivers with a stay period of at least 45 days so that it allowed tourists to spend longer time in the country.
Deputy Minister of Public Security Mr. Luong Tam Quang, added that its not just the issue of e-visas that holding back the tourism recovery.
He said that since 15 March, the ministry “has completely restored the visa policy to what it was before the pandemic.”
According to Mr. Quang, citizens from 80 countries can apply for an e-visa to visit Vietnam at the moment without visiting a consulate or going through agents.
Many foreign tourists, however, hope that the Vietnam government would revive the multiple-entry three-month visa that was available before the Covid-19 period.
Vietnam’s Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Mr. Nguyen Van Hung had recently suggested that it should issue e-visas to all countries and provide visa-on-arrival service for foreigners at immigration points to boost its tourism numbers.
Currently, the Vietnam Prime Minister, Mr. Pham Minh Chinh is in Laos for a state visit and to chair the 45th meeting of the Laos-Vietnam Inter-Governmental Committee with his Lao counterpart Mr. Sonexay Siphandone.