Visiting Vietnam without formalities

Vietnam simplifies visa regime for Belarusian citizens
‘From July 1st, 2015, citizens of the Republic of Belarus visiting Vietnam for up to 15 days will not need to apply for a visa, regardless of their passport type or purpose of visit. A visa-free regime for Belarusians making short trips to Vietnam will be valid for five years, until June 30th, 2020. Vietnam’s legislation envisages the possibility of further extension of the document,’ notes the Belarusian Foreign Ministry, citing the Vietnamese Government.

Facilitation of the visa regime has been under discussion for the past few years, alongside talks on a free trade agreement. The Foreign Ministry has announced that ‘development of trade-economic relations within the framework of a free trade zone is difficult to accomplish without mutual facilitation of movement, by business circles’. It explains that, in December 2014, Belarus ‘simplified visa regulations for citizens of Vietnam on a unilateral basis’. “The reciprocal step was raised when Belarus’ Prime Minister, Andrei Kobyakov, met the Prime Minister of Vietnam, Nguyen Tan Dung, during the signing of a free trade agreement between the Eurasian Economic Union and the Socialist Republic of Vietnam in Kazakhstan, in May 2015’.

Belarus has praised Vietnam’s prompt adoption of the corresponding decision: from July 1st, 2015, Belarusians will be able to make visa-free short trips to Vietnam.

The Foreign Ministry notes that Belarus is one of the few countries granted visa-free short trips to Vietnam (for up to 15 days) and is the first country to gain this privilege under Vietnam’s new legislation, showing the robust and friendly relations between our countries.

The Government of Vietnam unilaterally introduced visa-free entry to Vietnam (for up to 15 days) for citizens of the Republic of Korea and Japan in 2004, for those of Denmark, Sweden, Norway, and Finland in 2005, and for those of the Russian Federation in 2009. From January 1st, 2015, the Vietnamese Government’s power to unilaterally introduce a visa-free regime for citizens of another country was fixed at legislative level.

By Alexander Pimenov
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