Kazakhstan and Vietnam Establish Visa-Free Travel Agreement

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    On August 21, 2023, Kazakhstan and Vietnam signed a landmark agreement, establishing a mutual visa-free regime effective from May 25, 2024. This pivotal move is set to make travel between the two countries easier, fostering stronger bilateral relations and promoting economic and cultural exchanges. This agreement allows citizens of both countries, who hold valid national passports, to travel between the two nations without a visa. The visa exemption permits travelers to stay for up to 30 calendar days per entry, with a total of 90 calendar days allowed within a six-month period.

    Boost for Tourism and Relations

    The visa-free agreement is anticipated to significantly enhance tourism, with an expected increase in travelers between Kazakhstan and Vietnam. This development is part of Kazakhstan’s strategic initiative to extend its visa-free travel arrangements with multiple countries, facilitating easier access for tourists and business travelers alike.

    Wider Visa Policy Reforms

    Alongside the visa-free regime with Vietnam, Kazakhstan has been proactive in revising its visa policies on a broader scale. Recent measures include simplifying the Schengen visa process for its citizens and introducing an e-Visa system for visitors from specified countries. These reforms aim to attract more foreign investment and bolster the tourism sector.

    Challenges in Visa Policy Implementation

    Despite these advances, Kazakhstan’s visa policy has not been without its challenges. Delays and debates, particularly regarding a mutual visa-free regime with Uzbekistan, underscore the complexities involved in visa policy reform. However, ongoing discussions are hopeful for future enhancements, including a potential regional visa program.

    Conclusion

    The new visa-free travel arrangement between Kazakhstan and Vietnam marks a significant step in enhancing inter-country accessibility and is expected to have broad positive impacts on tourism and economic activities. As Kazakhstan continues to reform its visa policies, the focus remains on creating a more interconnected and thriving Eurasian region.

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