COLOMBO, Nov. 28 (Xinhua) — Sri Lanka will waive visa fees for residents of China, India, Indonesia, Russia, Thailand, Malaysia and Japan with immediate effect, according to a statement from the Department of Immigration and Emigration sent to media on Tuesday.
The department said this scheme is valid until March 31, 2024, and that this is a pilot program to rebuild the tourism industry.
Residents of the above countries who possess diplomatic, official, public affairs, service and ordinary passports are eligible for this scheme.
Visitors from the above countries first need to apply for a free Electronic Travel Authorization (ETA) before arriving in Sri Lanka, the department said.
Under this scheme, tourists can enjoy a 30-day visa period, and a double entry facility is permitted from the date of first arrival to Sri Lanka within 30 days, the statement said.
Tourism is an important source of foreign income for Sri Lanka, and the country has been trying to boost tourism revenue following the setbacks between 2020 and 2022 due to the COVID-19 pandemic and economic crisis.