In an unprecedented move, Pakistan mulls joint single tourist visa with these States

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In an unprecedented move, Pakistan mulls joint single tourist visa with these States

ISLAMABAD - Pakistan wants to introduce a single visa for tourists visiting the Central Asia Regional Economic Cooperation (CAREC) sub-region, to facilitate tourist movement and increase the likelihood of tourists doing multi-country visits, increasing the average time of stay and spending per tourist.

This has been revealed in the Asian Development Bank (ADB) report “Asian Economic Integration Report 2019-2020, demographic change, productivity, and the role of technology”.

The report further maintained that strengthening the intra-subregional ties would also help CAREC “brand” itself better as a future tourist destination for visitors from other countries in Asia, which makes up at least 60% of its market.

Pakistan has recently introduced changes to its visa policy — 50 countries are eligible to apply for a visa-on-arrival under the tourist category, while its online visa system is open to 175 countries.

Visitors from Southeast Asia have become more Asia-centric. Its shares of intra-subregional (38.7%) and inter-subregional (43.4%) tourism have grown relative to 2010.

Intra-subregional visitors increased by around half a million in 2017, while inter-subregional arrivals recorded brisk growth (7.2 million visitors more than in 2016), especially Myanmar and Vietnam.