The Indian Government has decided to relax the visa rules further and the bid has been made to boost exports. According to Nirmala Sitharaman, the Commerce minister, Business and trade are being affected by visa restrictions, imposed in the country. According to the calculations, our country has a restraining visa system, and loses out on nearly $ 80 million that can be earned through exports.
Planning is on, and the existing visa regime of the country is in for liberalization in the near future. Business and multiple –entry tourist visas will be allowed. This was the main topic of discussion on Tuesday during a meeting, held at the Prime Minister’s office. Secretaries from home and external affairs and commerce ministries were a part of the meeting. The Modi Government had started the e-tourist visa regime that includes 150 countries since November 2014, and now there are plans on liberalizing this scheme further. Speculations are stating that medical travel visas, short-term business visas and Visas “for developed countries” will be eased.
Commerce minister Nirmala Sitharaman has stated “These are the irritants we want to remove. However, there are also security constraints and there are countries with whom we want to be cautious.” This endeavor is being carried out to enhance services exports as “services contribute 57% to India’s $2 trillion economy, the country’s net services exports amounted to a meagre $73 billion in 2013-14, in which software alone accounted for $69 billion.”
Global standards for trade in services need to be set under the WTO, and this will permit transparency in visa regimes. Skilled professionals will now be able to plan, without the botheration of too many restrictions. An extension for citizens of almost 169 countries for the “free 30-day” visa on arrival has been offered, and this attempts to target better tourism.