Japan to relax visa norms for Indians

Tokyo, Feb 2 (IANS) Japan is set to ease visa regulations for people travelling from India and Vietnam as multiple-entry visa terms are to be doubled for nationals of the two countries, the media reported on Tuesday.

The easing of rules, effective from February 15, will affect people initially travelling for “business purposes and for cultural or intellectual figures”, the foreign ministry said in a statement. Subsequent visits on the same visa can be social in nature, the Japan Times reported.

Currently, Indian and Vietnamese nationals can obtain multiple-entry visas of up to five years’ duration. The change will grant them 10-year visas.

The 10-year visas will be the longest that Japan will issue, the ministry said.

Holders of such multiple-entry visas will be restricted to visiting Japan for business purposes or academic exchanges but can then re-enter multiple times for tourism or to meet friends and families, the ministry said.

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announced the planned visa relaxations during a visit to India in December 2015 and also at a summit with Nguyen Phu Trong, general secretary of Vietnam’s ruling Communist Party, in September 2015.

“These measures are expected to further advance people-to-people exchanges with Vietnam and India,” the ministry added.

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