Visa on arrival now available at Walvis Bay airport

Walvis Bay International airport has on Thursday become the second entry point used for the issuing of visas on arrival pilot phase.

This comes after the first pilot phase was commissioned at the Hosea Kutako International Airport in September this year.

Launching the project, Deputy Minister of Home Affairs and Immigration Maureen Hinda-Mbuende said that the visa on arrival at entry point will be issued in order to make it easy for the visitors to Namibia and further boost local economic growth.

According to the minister, one of the fundamental purposes which gave rise to this project is Government's commitment to improve amongst others; Namibia's Global Competitive Ratings.

'We should be cognisant that this can only be achieved by eliminating 'bottlenecks' in our operations and process.

Furthermore, our ministry will continue to deploy smarter approaches to support tourism and economic growth while maintaining the integrity and security of our country,' Hinda-Mbuende said.

Additionally, the minister pointed out the fact that Namibia does not have a far reaching diplomatic representation and network across the world, thus visitors from specific countries of origin for tourism, visiting or transiting through Namibia.

Currently, 48 out of 60 countries have been selected for visas on arrival for three categories including ordinary, diplomatic and official/service passport are accommodated for purposes of the obligate such people to apply and acquire employment permit in advance.

The current countries include 27 African countries and 21 other countries including Belarus, Cambodia, Hungary, among others.

These are not the only countries we are aiming to include on the list for visas on arrival and that this is an ongoing process which will see more countries brought on board in future, the minister noted.

She requested other countries to reciprocate or offer Namibia similar relaxed visa benefits for the good of everyone.

The visas will benefit the bona fide tourists, potential investors, visitors attending meetings, seminars and workshops, friendships and family as well as medical related visits.

The ministry, in consultation with relevant Government stakeholders and other non-governmental actors will continue to spearhead the process for the relaxation of the visa regime so that it enables the tourism sector to gain maximum benefits for the country's economic and social development, according to Hinda-Mbuende.

Source: Namibia Press Agency