11 September 2008

Lobby for visa waivers for Russian and Chinese tourists to US

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Lobbyists are pushing for America to change visa legislation so that the country's largest tourist markets will not have to apply for a tourist visa when visiting the country, reports the Saipan Tribune.

Diego T. Benavente, Chairman of the House Committee on Federal and Foreign Relations yesterday called on the American Government to include Russia and China in the Guam and Northern Marianas visa waiver program.

Next week officials will offer a resolution in Washington D.C., which will outline the benefits of maintaining good relations with the Chinese and Russian tourist markets in the Northern Marianas.   Around 400,000 Russian and Chinese tourists have entered the region over the past decade, and of these only 12 Chinese tourists have overstayed their visa.

New proposals for immigration changes will mean Russian and Chinese tourists may have to apply for an American visa to access the US.  A new list of countries who are part of the American Tourist visa waiver program is due to be published on the 4 November 2008.

The American Visa Bureau is an independent consulting company specialising in American visa and immigration services.

Article by Jessica Bird, American Visa Bureau.

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