7月1日起可以免签去爱尔兰啦!

现在在英国的同学们和明年来英国的同学们有福利了。。。

爱尔兰司法部长艾伦·谢特当地时间11日晚宣布,从今年7月1日至明年10月底,给予包括中国、俄罗斯、印度在内的14个国家的公民经由英国短期来爱尔兰免签证待遇,希望能借此吸引伦敦奥运会游客前往爱尔兰旅游。

■首个正式免签政策

享受免签待遇的14个国家主要分布在亚太地区和中东,它们分别是:中国、印度、俄罗斯、白俄罗斯、黑山、塞尔维亚、土耳其、乌克兰、巴林、科威特、沙特阿拉伯、卡塔尔、阿联酋、乌兹别克斯坦。

英国和爱尔兰虽然是欧盟国家,但不是申根协定的成员国,前往爱尔兰需要单独申请该国签证。谢特表示,从今年7月1日起,如果来自上述14个国家的公民已获得赴英国的短期签证并且已经凭此签证进入英国,那就无需再办理赴爱尔兰的短期签证。

此外,在英国获得长期居留权的上述14个国家的公民,也将享受免签待遇。这是爱尔兰首个正式的免签政策。

■简化手续节约费用

谢特表示,这项免签政策不仅能够使来自上述14个国家的公民省去前往爱尔兰的签证手续,而且能为他们节省一笔不小的签证费用。

他举例说,目前爱尔兰的签证费是60欧元。如果一家四口在英国伦敦旅游结束后希望顺便造访爱尔兰,仅签证费用就需要240欧元。“从今年7月1日开始,这项费用没有了。”谢特说。

谢特说,实行这项免签政策的目的很明确,就是希望前往英国的游客能够很方便地把爱尔兰“镶嵌”到他们的英国之旅中。免签政策同时也是为了吸引一些以前不会考虑前往爱尔兰考察的商务人士。

谢特表示,当前的爱尔兰签证政策对外国游客和商务人士来说是个阻碍,这次改革可以说是公共政策的重要变化。伦敦奥运会期间将有大量游客造访英国,如果爱尔兰不改变签证政策,意味着旅游业将遭受重大损失。据统计,去年共有3万名来自上述14国的游客前往爱尔兰。谢特说,这项免签政策将于明年10月底截止,之后政府将对其进行评估。他希望这一免签措施将来能够永久化。

■在亚太地区推广旅游

谢特表示,亚太地区将是发展非常迅速的重要新兴旅游市场。除了推出免签证政策外,爱尔兰还采取了一系列行动在亚太地区推广旅游。本周末,爱尔兰就将派出代表团参加英国及爱尔兰旅游目的地推广会。代表团将在会上与包括中国、南非、阿联酋在内的15个新兴旅游市场国家的120多个旅游公司、旅行社以及媒体代表见面,推广爱尔兰旅游。

爱尔兰有“翡翠绿岛”之称,自然风光和历史古迹等旅游资源丰富。

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司法部原文链接

http://www.justice.ie/en/JELR/Pages/visa_waiver_pr

Alan Shatter TD, Minister for Justice, Equality and Defence announces Ireland’s first formal Visa Waiver Programme as an integral part of the Government’s Job Initiative

The Government today has approved a proposal from Alan Shatter TD, Minister for Justice, Equality and Defence to introduce Ireland’s first formal Visa Waiver Programme. This Programme, which forms an integral part of the Government’s Job Initiative, is a major change in public policy in the immigration area. It is designed to assist in the promotion of Ireland as a quality tourist destination for markets which hitherto would not have been regarded as traditional source countries for tourism to Ireland.

Speaking at the announcement this evening, Minister Shatter said that “our economic difficulties also present us with opportunities; it gives us a chance to take a fresh look at what we do and how we do it. Dismantling barriers which act as a disincentive to potential and sought after visitors is a case in point. This Visa Waiver Programme is a very significant initiative in the area of visa liberalisation. It will have real and tangible benefits for the nationals of the 14 or so countries (who currently require a visa to come here) participating in the scheme and it will provide a much needed shot in the arm for the hard pressed tourist industry which accounts for such significant employment in the State. Last year approximately, 30,000 people were issued visas from the participating countries to come here; those visitors helped to provide and maintain jobs in our economy. With this measure we anticipate that we can grow this market and thereby generate more jobs.”

Details of the Programme

Nationals of 14 countries – who ordinarily need a visa to enter the State (at a cost of €60) – who obtain a visa to enter the UK for a short term visa will not, for the duration of the programme, be required to obtain a visa for Ireland. In addition, special arrangements will be put in place to facilitate visits by nationals of these 14 countries who are long-term residents in the UK.  The Programme will be implemented on a pilot basis until the end of October 2012.

The list of countries to which the programme applies at this stage is at Appendix 1.

A new statutory instrument is being drafted to give effect to the Programme with a start of the 1 July 2011.

The practical effects of this initiative are:

* Individuals who avail of the Programme will not be required to pay the visa charge of €60 per person. For example, for a family of four, say from India, which travels to London for the Olympics next year and which would like to have a ‘side-trip’ to Ireland, participation in this Programme will result in a saving of €240 to them.
* Participants in the Programme will not have to go through the inconvenience of submitting detailed financial and personal information in connection with the visa application. Tourist bodies report that this duplication of administrative paperwork acts as a significant disincentive to short stay visitors and for the development and marketing of Ireland as an “add-on” destination.
* Last year alone, Ireland approved approximately 30,000 applications for visas from nationals of these countries. However, hundreds of thousands, if not more, of these nationals visit the UK as tourists every year.
* This Programme is designed to make it very attractive for these visitors to the UK to consider Ireland as an “add-on” element to their planned holiday. Even if a small proportion of these UK visitors decide to come here it will make a real difference to our economy and for job opportunities for our people.

Speaking at the launch Minister Shatter said, “This initiative is taking place in the context of the Common Travel Area between Ireland and the UK – a cornerstone of the significant relationship across the entire spectrum of our shared interests in economic and social policy, as well as in trade cultural and security issues. Its existence is indispensable to tens of thousands of people on this island as they go about their daily lives; today’s announcement will serve to further underscore that close relationship and our common interest in protecting, nurturing and enhancing it. The common travel area in good times and not so good times has delivered immense value to our nation. I see today’s initiative as another significant step on that road.

My message today as Minister with responsibility for Immigration is entirely consonant with that of my colleagues in the economic departments. Ireland is very much open for business; the measures I am putting in place are designed to ensure that we make it as easy as possible for the genuine tourist or short stay visitor to come here to avail of the excellent world class product we have to offer in the hospitality sector.

I am certain that the tourist industry which is such a major contributor to our economic well being and the provider of tens of thousands of jobs will avail of the exciting potential of this new departure in public policy in the immigration area.”

In conclusion, Minister Shatter said he will shortly be bringing forward new proposals to make Ireland an attractive immigration investor destination. These proposals are being worked upon at the moment and will provide scope for further employment opportunities in due course.

Finally, the Minister said that his Department had recently finalised new immigration procedures for cruise-liners visiting Ireland which will facilitate the easy embarkation of visitors at ports of entry.

Appendix 1

List of countries to which the Visa Waiver Programme will apply:

Nationals from Eastern Europe
Belarus
Montenegro
Russian Federation
Serbia
Turkey
Ukraine

Middle East
Bahrain
Kuwait
Qatar
Saudi Arabia
United Arab Emirates

Other Asian Countries
India
Peoples’ Republic of China

Uzbekistan

 

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