Vietnam negotiating with 15 countries for bilateral visa exemption

According to Minister of Foreign Affairs Bui Thanh Son, Vietnam has been negotiating with 15 countries for bilateral visa exemption.

Minister of Foreign Affairs Bui Thanh Son

Minister of Foreign Affairs Bui Thanh Son revealed this at this afternoon’s meeting of the National Assembly Standing Committee while he had to answer questions.

According to the Minister, 13 countries are currently unilaterally exempted from visas by Vietnam. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs also negotiated with 15 countries to implement bilateral visa exemption and is negotiating bilateral visa exemption with a number of other countries; first of all on diplomatic and official visas.

The minister was asked to clarify the protection of Vietnamese citizens abroad, law violations by Vietnamese citizens abroad and foreigners in Vietnam and protection of the legitimate rights and interests of Vietnamese fishermen.

Moreover, deputies at the meeting wanted to know the current status of the implementation of bilateral and multilateral agreements and solutions to promote the implementation of economic, trade and investment cooperation agreements, the Ministry’s support for expanding export goods markets, helping Vietnamese businesses avoid fraud, promotion of Vietnamese tourism to the world and visa exemption for citizens of other countries entering Vietnam to develop tourism. All these issues were explained by Minister Son.

National Assembly Vice Chairman Nguyen Khac Dinh moderated the questioning session.

Deputy Ta Thi Yen from the Northern Province of Dien Bien commented that in recent years, Vietnam has always been voted as a favorite destination for tourists. Vietnam has also unilaterally or signed visa exemption agreements with several countries to create conditions for attracting tourism and facilitating foreign investment.

Besides, the number of Vietnamese people going abroad to work and travel is also very large. However, there are still quite a few countries that exempt Vietnamese citizens from visas and applying for visas for Vietnamese citizens still faces many difficulties and complications.

According to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry has coordinated with authorities to simplify immigration procedures. Most recently, the National Assembly passed the Law amending and supplementing a number of articles of the Law on Entry and Exit.

Deputy Chu Thi Hong Thai from Lang Son Province requested the Minister to inform the implementation situation, roadmap and solutions to promote cooperation agreements and attract investment in the coming time so that localities along border crossings can upgrade border gates, promoting the full potential, strengths and existing advantages of the border areas for socio-economic development, improving and enhancing the lives of people in the border areas.

The Minister said that the country has 25 provinces bordering land borders with neighboring countries. Recently, the Prime Minister also issued a master plan for upgrading Vietnam's border gates with neighboring partners in accordance with the 2017 Planning Law and the National Master Plan for the period 2021-2030 which has been passed by the National Assembly. This is an important basis for implementing economic diplomacy as well as cross-border economic cooperation between Vietnam and neighboring countries.

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