Rwanda ready to implement single regional tourist visa

KIGALI - The head of Tourism and Conservation at the Rwanda Development Board (RDB), Rica Rwigamba, has announced that Rwanda is ready to implement the EAC single tourists’ visa.She urged other member states to accelerate the process for the benefit of the entire region
Tourists on a tour of the country. The EAC Single Visa for tourists will significantly boost the sector. The New Times / File.
Tourists on a tour of the country. The EAC Single Visa for tourists will significantly boost the sector. The New Times / File.

KIGALI - The head of Tourism and Conservation at the Rwanda Development Board (RDB), Rica Rwigamba, has announced that Rwanda is ready to implement the EAC single tourists’ visa.

She urged other member states to accelerate the process for the benefit of the entire region.

Once the single visa is implemented, all international tourists will be allowed to tour all East Africa Community member countries without the need for a national visa, an initiative Rwigamba said would help to develop the tourism sector.

“We are ready to implement it and there are some countries that are at an advanced stage. Our aim is to widen the market and develop the tourism industry.

We think that if implemented, it will ease and increase the number of tourists in the region,” she said.

The EAC Sectoral Council on Tourism and Wildlife Management, has called on partner states to fast-track the introduction of the single EAC tourist visa, saying the process was taking too long.

The experts were on Thursday attending the fourth meeting of the council in Mombasa, Kenya to discuss the establishment of the regional single tourist visa.

The meeting resolved that partner states should work to remove the numerous bottlenecks that the sector faces to ease and establish the regional visa immediately.

Rwigamba acknowledged that the tourism industry needs to be propelled higher to allow more tourists in the market and elevate the development of the industry and accrue more benefits to regional citizens.

Last year, about 666,000 tourists visited various tourist attractions in Rwanda with nationals constituting 22 percent.

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