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PH, three nations agree to work on Asean common smart visa

Date: 05 Jun 2013

Ministers and tourism authorities of the Philippines, Myanmar, Cambodia, and Indonesia have expressed their intention to collaborate with relevant government agencies and other stakeholders to facilitate travel in the region by developing a common smart visa system.

The Asean countries have signed the "Statement of Intent on Smart Visa" on Wednesday, June 5, at the 22nd World Economic Forum on East Asia currently taking place in Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar (Burma).

The initiative is the first global implementation of the smart visa system.

According to www.smartvisa.travel, a smart visa is a digital paperless substitute for a traditional visa that can be obtained by a traveler from a travel agent or participating airline at the time of making a travel reservation or online through an Internet portal or through a mobile device such as a smart phone.

The first smart visa, the website said, was introduced by Australia in 1996, called an Electronic Travel Authority (ETA), driven by the Sydney 2000 Olympics need to process large volumes of visa applications during a specific time period.

"The success of the Australian smart visa system resulted in the introduction of smart visa systems by Armenia, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Cambodia, and most recently in Sri Lanka," it noted.

The website said an alternative system – the electronic visa or e-visa – is also being considered by many countries.

"However, the cost is high for a standalone system, a major issue particularly for developing countries. There is a need for a globally interoperable central system that can be shared by multiple countries," it said.

The statement of intent from Asean member-states forms a part of joint efforts to improve growth of the national and regional travel and tourism sectors along with social integration.

More specifically, ministers of tourism have agreed to collaborate on working towards the Asean Common Visa initiative as called upon by leaders at the Asean Summit, which took place in Jakarta in November 2011.

It also builds on the single visa scheme for tourism travel between Cambodia and Thailand, which was implemented on January 1, 2013. Progressive relaxation and an Asean common visa would also benefit non-Asean nationals who intend to visit the Asean countries.

"By recognizing the importance of the connectivity in tourism activities, the statement of intent expresses our desire to give a boost to the tourism sector by facilitating the movement of tourists across borders; by going towards a smart visa through adopting best practices; and maximizing the use of technology to reduce the inefficiencies of the traditional visa application process," stated Department of Tourism secretary Ramon R. Jimenez Jr.

Given the experience of other countries and regions, it is expected that Asean countries will also experience the positive impact of implementing a smart visa on the growth of the tourism sector, increased investments in the travel and tourism industry, and job creation.

Source :
http://newsbytes.ph/2013/06/05/ph-three-nations-agree-to-work-on-asean-common-smart-visa



ASEAN members sign letter of intent at World Economic Forum for common smart visa system

Date: June 06, 2013

TBM Staff | Mumbai

Myanmar, Cambodia, Indonesia and the Philippines yesterday signed a letter of intent during the World Economic Forum (WEF) on East Asia, being held in Myanmar, to set up a common smart visa system. The move is aimed at economic integration of Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). The visa will be on the lines of the Schengen visa that applies to the group of 26 European countries, and follows a call for a common visa by ASEAN leaders at Jakarta in November 2011, as per a report by Utpal Bhaskar in Mint.

U. Htay Aung, Minister for Hotels & Tourism, Myanmar, said, "By signing this letter of intent, ministers and tourism authorities agree to work hand-in-hand for the implementation of this system, whose objective will be that of eliminating those barriers to the movement of tourists, which are currently creating disincentives to travel. Such objectives will be achieved in close coordination with the governmental entities in each of their respective countries."

"More specifically, ministers of tourism have agreed to collaborate. It also builds on the single visa scheme for tourism travel between Cambodia and Thailand, which was implemented on January 1, 2013," Aung said in a WEF statement.

Source :
TBM Staff | Mumbai
http://www.travelbizmonitor.com/asean-members-sign-letter-of-intent-at-world-economic-forum-for-common-smart-visa-system-20610




Common ASEAN visa system in the making

Date: June 6, 2013

Posted by Arno Maierbrugger on June 6, 2013 in Human Resources, Tourism & Hospitality

Four ASEAN countries on June 5 at the World Economic Forum (WEF) on East Asia 2013 held in Myanmar signed an agreement to facilitate easier travel in the region through a common smart visa system.

Tourism ministers and officials from Myanmar, Cambodia, Indonesia and the Philippines said such a visa system – modeled after the Schengen visa that applies to the group of 26 European countries – would help with pushing economic integration of ASEAN member countries.

The move follows a call for a common visa by ASEAN leaders in Jakarta in November 2011 and a common visa for Thailand and Cambodia that was already implemented on January 1, 2013. There were also talks about introducing a common business visa for ASEAN at the latest ASEAN summit in Brunei in April.

"By signing this letter of intent, ministers and tourism authorities agree to work hand-in-hand for the implementation of this system, whose objective will be that of eliminating those barriers to the movement of tourists which are currently creating disincentives to travel," U Htay Aung, Myanmar's minister for hotels and tourism, said in a WEF statement.

"Such objectives will be achieved in close coordination with the governmental entities in each of their respective countries," the minister added.

"The impending launch of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) in 2015 means all member countries will be looking to implement a long-term strategy for strong networked trade and regional integration, as well as improving infrastructure to get the most out of fast-growing economies in Cambodia, Laos and Myanmar," consulting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers said in a report prepared for WEF.

"At the same time, ASEAN will work on managing its inherent internal diversity while presenting a united front in strategic bilateral relationships with key partners such as China, India and the US," it said. In a latest development, Ho Chi Minh City authorities have urged the Vietnam government to approach Thailand and other Mekong countries with the aim of implementing a one-visa policy within the region to bring in more tourists.The city is pressing for the campaign through the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism, the Saigon Times reported.

Source :
Arno Maierbrugger on June 6, 2013 in Human Resources, Tourism & Hospitality
http://investvine.com/common-asean-visa-system-in-the-making/




Philippines, 3 other Asean countries agree to adopt common visa scheme

Date: June 7, 2013

InterAksyon.com means BUSINESS

MANILA - The Philippines, Myanmar, Cambodia and Indonesia have agreed to develop a common smart visa system to boost tourism across Southeast Asia.

During the 22nd World Economic Forum (WEF) on East Asia, ministers and tourism authorities of the four Asean member-states said they will facilitate travel in the region by developing a common smart visa system.

Tourism ministers of the four Asean member-states have signed the "Statement of Intent on SMART Visa" during the ongoing WEF meeting taking place in Nay Pyi Taw from June 5-7.

"By recognizing the importance of the connectivity in tourism activities, the statement of intent expresses our desire to give a boost to the tourism sector by facilitating the movement of tourists across borders; by going towards a smart visa through adopting best practices; and maximizing the use of technology to reduce the inefficiencies of the traditional visa application process," Department of Tourism Secretary Ramon R. Jimenez Jr. said in a statement.

"By signing this letter of intent, ministers and tourism authorities agree to work hand-in-hand for the implementation of this system, whose objective will be that of eliminating those barriers to the movement of tourists which are currently creating disincentives to travel. Such objectives will be achieved in close coordination with the governmental entities in each of their respective countries," said U Htay Aung, Union Minister of Hotels and Tourism of Myanmar.

The statement of intent forms a part of joint efforts to improve growth of the national and regional travel and tourism sectors along with social integration.

More specifically, ministers of tourism have agreed to collaborate on working towards the Asean Common Visa initiative as called upon by leaders at the Asean Summit in Jakarta in November 2011.

It also builds on the single visa scheme for tourism travel between Cambodia and Thailand that began this year. Progressive relaxation and an Asean common visa would also benefit non-Asean nationals who intend to visit the region.

According to Indonesian Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy Mari Elka Pangestu, "Considering that tourism is a priority sector under the Asean Economic Community and that it constitutes a significant contribution to the integration of Asean countries, it is important to be 'smart' about visa facilitation for travel."

In the Philippines, President Benigno Aquino III had issued Executive Order 29, outlining his government' open-skies policy, which involves allowing foreign airlines to fly to airports other than the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA).

Source :
Darwin G. Amojelar, InterAksyon.com
http://www.interaksyon.com/business/63531/philippines-3-other-asean-countries-agree-to-adopt-common-visa-scheme




Myanmar, Cambodia, Indonesia and the Philippines Agree to Work on ASEAN Common Smart Tourism

Date: 5 June 2013

Fon Mathuros, Director, Media, World Economic Forum, Tel.: +41 (0)79 201 0211;
E-mail: fmathuro@weforum.org

Language of Myanmar
  • Ministers and tourism authorities from Myanmar, Cambodia, Indonesia and the Secretary of Tourism of the Philippines have today agreed to collaborate on a smart tourism system
  • Letter of intent was signed in Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar, during the World Economic Forum on East Asia
  • Over 900 participants from 55 countries are taking part in the meeting on 5-7 June
  • For more information about the meeting, please visit http://wef.ch/ea13
  • Download the Media Mobile/iPad App for the 2013 World Economic Forum on East Asia

Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar, 5 June 2013 – Ministers and tourism authorities of Myanmar, Cambodia, Indonesia and the Secretary of Tourism of the Philippines have expressed their intention to collaborate with relevant government agencies and other stakeholders to facilitate travel in the region by developing a common smart visa system, and have signed the “Statement of Intent on SMART Visa” today at the 22nd World Economic Forum on East Asia. The meeting is taking place in Nay Pyi Taw from 5 to 7 June.

“By signing this letter of intent, ministers and tourism authorities agree to work hand-in-hand for the implementation of this system, whose objective will be that of eliminating those barriers to the movement of tourists which are currently creating disincentives to travel. Such objectives will be achieved in close coordination with the governmental entities in each of their respective countries,” said U Htay Aung, Union Minister of Hotels and Tourism of Myanmar. The statement of intent forms a part of joint efforts to improve growth of the national and regional travel and tourism sectors along with social integration.

More specifically, ministers of tourism have agreed to collaborate on working towards the ASEAN Common Visa initiative as called upon by leaders at the ASEAN Summit, which took place in Jakarta in November 2011. It also builds on the single visa scheme for tourism travel between Cambodia and Thailand, which was implemented on 1 January 2013. Progressive relaxation and an ASEAN common visa would also benefit non-ASEAN nationals who intend to visit the ASEAN countries.

According to Mari Elka Pangestu, Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy of Indonesia, “Considering that tourism is a priority sector under the ASEAN Economic Community and that it constitutes a significant contribution to the integration of ASEAN countries, it is important to be ‘smart’ about visa facilitation for travel.” Given the experience of other countries and regions, it is expected that ASEAN countries will also experience the positive impact of implementing a smart visa on the growth of the tourism sector, increased investments in the travel and tourism industry, and job creation.

“By recognizing the importance of the connectivity in tourism activities, the statement of intent expresses our desire to give a boost to the tourism sector by facilitating the movement of tourists across borders; by going towards a smart visa through adopting best practices; and maximizing the use of technology to reduce the inefficiencies of the traditional visa application process,” stated Ramon R. Jimenez Jr, Secretary of Tourism of the Philippines.

The statement of intent was signed during the World Economic Forum’s Travel & Tourism High-Level meeting held today under the theme “Building Myanmar's Travel & Tourism Industry: Driving Growth and Job Creation”. “Facilitating travel to stimulate economic growth and job creation is one of the pillars of the summit, and is a core activity of the Forum’s Industry Partners and Members of the Global Agenda Council on New Models for Travel & Tourism,” said Thea Chiesa, Director, World Economic Forum.

Over 900 participants from 55 countries are taking part in the World Economic Forum on East Asia, which is being held for the first time in Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar. The meeting welcomes over 100 public figures representing 15 countries, including heads of state or government of Laos, Myanmar, the Philippines and Vietnam. More than 550 business leaders, over 60 Global Growth Companies and nearly 300 young leaders from Young Global Leaders and Global Shapers communities, together with other members of civil society, academia and media are convening to discuss the challenges and opportunities facing Myanmar and East Asia today.

Sky Net is the host broadcaster of the 2013 World Economic Forum on East Asia.

Source :
World Economic Forum
http://www.weforum.org/news/myanmar-cambodia-indonesia-and-philippines-agree-work-asean-common-smart-tourism




ASEAN Visa proposed to increase regional tourism

Date: 28 August 2003

Traveling around the Southeast Asian region with a single visa is a possibility when there was an initiative to adopt an EU-style regime to increase tourism.
Prime Minister Taksin Shinawatra is expected to raise the issue at the ASEAN summit in Bali in October.

One visa could be offered to all 10 ASEAN countries or a single visa for the two or three countries best prepared to implement the regulation.

The new regime will also bring great opportunity to organize international sport events such as a marathon bicycle competition similar to Tour de France, covering Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, and Burma. The event, proposed to be held each November, would promote new tourism routes in the four countries and generate income for hotels, restaurants and other services along the routes.

Return to: Bangkok Travel News



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Last Modified: 19 September, 2011

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