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TTF lauds Coalition’s plan for streamlined processing of visas for Chinese visitors


Issues & Trends – August 2013

TTF lauds Coalition’s plan for streamlined processing
of visas for Chinese visitors

THE Tourism and Travel Forum (TTF) has hailed a commitment by the Federal Opposition to streamline the processing of visas for Chinese visitors.

Making it easier for Chinese visitors to come to Australia will deliver economic benefits across the country, according to the peak tourism lobby group.

The TTF comment came after Shadow Tourism Minister Bob Baldwin said a future Coalition government will implement electronic lodgement of visas, the extension of multiple entry visas for Chinese visitors and premium visa processing.

TTF chief executive Ken Morrison said this is welcome news for the industry.

“Anything that makes it easier for Chinese visitors to come to Australia is a positive step,” Morrison said.

“We are encouraged to see that a Coalition government would continue to work towards an online visa application process.

“We also support his commitment to further extending existing multiple entry visas and we would welcome a review of the current system to consider allowing two to three-year visitor visas.

“Tourism is a highly competitive global industry, so removing admini-strative barriers to entry makes it easier for travellers to choose Australia over other destinations.

“We are also strongly in favour of providing a premium visa processing option for people who wish to have their application expedited.

“There’s no practical reason we must maintain a ‘one size fits all’ approach to visa processing. Almost 700,000 Chinese visitors came to Australia in 2012/13, up more than 100,000 on the previous 12 months.

“Changes like these will encourage that growth to continue and support the more than 530,000 Australians who work in the tourism industry around the country.”

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