Trade and tourism between Rwanda and Turkey could further be strengthened following the decision by the Turkish Embassy to issue visas from Kigali.
Rwandans travelling to Turkey have been going to Kampala for travel visas before travelling to Turkey.
This will however no longer be the case following a decision by the Turkish Embassy in Rwanda to start issuing visas.
The visas will be issued from the Embassy premises located on Kagugu Road, KG426, No: 8, Nyarutarama a Kigali suburb in Rwanda, a statement from the Embassy indicated.
Omer Faruk Korkmaz, the General Manager Turkish Airlines Rwanda, said the initiative is a great opportunity for both countries and makes it easy for Rwandans especially traders to travel to Turkey.
Issuance of visa in Rwanda will boost the economic relationship between the two countries, FarukKorkmaz told The New Times in an interview yesterday.
“Rwandans have been waiting for the opening of Turkish Embassy in Rwanda since Turkish Airlines started its direct flights to Kigali (Istanbul-Kigali route) Recently, we are therefore confident that the new development will facilitate the process.”
We are therefore confident that issuance of visas here in Rwanda by our Turkish embassy will help strengthen the bilateral relationship between Rwanda and Turkey.
Geoffrey Kamanzi, the director for trade negotiations and investment promotion at private sector federation Rwanda said the initiative is an important milestone to boost trade partnerships between the two countries.
The Rwanda Development Board (RDB) has so far registered more $400 million worth of investment projects from Turkey in the past three years.
Rwanda’s exports to Turkey have increased to over $8.5 million on annual basis, but the country’s imports more than double this figure.
And to narrow the gap, the two countries recently established a business council to help promote trade between the two countries.
The Rwanda-Turkey Business Council is expected to strengthen economic ties between the two countries through trade promotion, co-ordination, as well as information, skills and knowledge sharing.
Therefore, issuing Turkish visas in Kigali will help reduce the cost of doing business between the two countries.
Rwanda imports about $21 million worth of commodities from turkey. Therefore, the new platform could help bridge the trade gap between the two countries.
How to obtain a visa
To get a visa one will have to present their passports, national ID card, 2 photos and all the documents as may be required by the embassy.
It is however advised to apply for visa at least one month before the departure date.
Meanwhile, all applicants must have biometric passport photos (American size), and a flight booking.
However, citizens with a valid Schengen, USA, UK or Ireland visa and/or residence through planned stay in Turkey, are strongly recommended to get their visa online:www.evisa.gov.tr (30 USD for single entry paid with a credit Card.