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Tuesday, January 03, 2012 - 6.30 GMT

Online visa yields Rs.1.5 m in first 10 hours


With the activation of the on-line visa system for tourists arriving in the country from midnight Saturday, the Immigration and Emigration Department has earned a sum of Rs1.5 million within the first 10 hours.

According to the Immigration and Emigration Controller General Chulananda Perera a total number of 1,252 visitors who arrived in Sri Lanka from midnight December 31 up to 10.30 am of 1st January 2012, 839 foreigners have obtained the services of the facility of the on-line visa system introduced by the Government. A special counter providing this facility at the Katunayake BIA had served 413 visitors arriving in Sri Lanka within ten hours after activation of the on-line visa system, he said.

‘The Immigration and Emigration Department has established a new Internet based on-line visa issuance system, namely, the ‘Electronic Travel Authorization’ (ETA) to simplify the visa process and facilitate short stay visitors, the Controller General said.

Accordingly, all visitors to Sri Lanka including transit passengers will have to apply for travel authorization on-line prior to their visit to the country effective from Saturday midnight.

This new system will scrap the previously implemented ‘on arrival visa’ at the ports of entry while a fee of US$ 10 and 20 will be levied from travelers from the SAARC countries and other passport holders, respectively.

Travellers from Singapore , the Maldives and a few other countries will be exempted from the visa fee as reciprocities. The Electronic Travel Authorization has been introduced to grant prior approval for visa on-line for foreign nationals from 78 countries.

He said that foreign nationals visiting the country on tourism purposes for medical treatments, sports, cultural shows, business conferences and discussions, training programmes and seminars, can apply for the Electronic Travel Authorization via established at the Department of Immigration and Emigration.





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Last modified: January 03, 2012.

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