Qatar drops visa re­quire­ments

The Star Early Edition - - WORLD -

DOHA: Qatar yes­ter­day an­nounced a pro­gramme to al­low visa-free en­try for cit­i­zens of 80 coun­tries to en­cour­age air trans­port and tourism amid a two-month boy­cott im­posed on the Gulf state by its neigh­bours.

Na­tion­als from dozens of coun­tries in Europe and else­where in­clud­ing In­dia, Le­banon, New Zealand, South Africa, and the US only need to present a valid pass­port to en­ter the gas-rich coun­try.

Na­tion­als of 33 coun­tries will be al­lowed to stay for 180 days, and the other 47 for up to 30 days.

“The visa ex­emp­tion scheme will make Qatar the most open coun­try in the re­gion,” said Has­san al-Ibrahim, Chief Tourism De­vel­op­ment of­fi­cer at Qatar Tourism Au­thor­ity.

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