Turkey Watch

Watching the Turkish nail being put into Europian coffin.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Turkey Eases Visa Rules for GCC Nationals

From Arab News

Turkey has announced that it has eased visa rules for nationals of the Gulf Cooperation Council states, including Saudi Arabia, granting them long-term entry visas on arrival at Turkish entry points.

“Saudi passport holders can obtain visas immediately on arrival at any Turkish airport or border point or they have the choice to get visas from the Turkish Embassy or its consulate in Jeddah well before their departure,” Turkish Ambassador Ugur Dogan said in a statement yesterday.

The entry visa, to be issued on arrival at Turkish border points, will be for multiple entries with a 90-day validity. This visa regime is for visitors only; other visas will still require applying at the embassy in Riyadh or the consulate in Jeddah.

The simplified visa procedure is expected to boost business and tourism traffic between Turkey and the Gulf countries.

More than 37,000 Saudis visited Turkey last year, marking a growing trend in the number of visitors to that country from the Kingdom.

Predicting a major increase in Gulf travelers to Turkey this year, Dogan said Turkey had much to offer to visitors from the region as the country represents a blend of history, nature and hospitality, making it a unique destination for Arab tourists.

Turkey has set out a broad vision to tap tourism market of the Gulf countries, mainly Saudi Arabia, by holding promotional programs and generating awareness.

“A number of fascinating sites and monuments, facilities and edifices, beautiful mosques from Ottoman and Seljuk eras, sites of pre-Islamic times and above all the nature with mountainous forests, lakes and rivers are major attractions in Turkey,” said an embassy statement.


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