Indians received highest number of e-Visas from Bahrain
Posted on April 13, 2015
MANAMA: Indians have received the highest number of eVisas to Bahrain among all new eligible countries with over 750 people procuring the visa under the new policy of the Gulf Kingdom.
752 Indians received eVisas to Bahrain, 33 per cent of the approximately 2,300 eVisas issued to nationals from 32 newly eligible countries, official statistics from October 2014 to February 2015 showed.
Bahrain has also announced a second phase of updates to the Kingdom’s visa policy, which will allow Indian visitors to spend longer periods of time in the country.
“The second phase of updates will lead to further benefits for Indian visitors, with increased flexibility and expanded eligibility,” said Shaikh Ahmed bin Isa Al Khalifa, Assistant Undersecretary for the General Directorate of Nationality, Passports and Residence Affairs at Bahrain’s Ministry of Interior.
From April 1 this year, business visas will be valid for a month and are multi-entry, while visitor visas are valid for three months and are also multi-entry, according to a statement by Bahrain Economic Development Board.
Indian residents in the 6-member GCC will also be eligible to receive multi-entry visas on arrival or through online application, making it easier for expatriates living in the region to travel to Bahrain.
GCC member states are Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the UAE.
The newly eligible countries that could apply for eVisas include Pakistan, Jordon, South Africa among others.
“India is one of Bahrain’s most important trading partners, with total non-oil trade between the two countries in excess of USD 1.2 billion per year,” said Khalid Al Rumaihi, Chief Executive of the Bahrain Economic Development Board (EDB).
“Bahrain’s new visa policy will improve access for Indians and Indian businesses to the Bahrain and GCC market, currently worth USD 1.6 trillion and expected to reach USD 2 trillion by 2020. The new visa policy is an important development that places Bahrain among the countries with the most flexible visa policies in the region,” said Rumaihi.
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