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Vietnam Mulls Visa Waivers for Australians and Indians

Vietnam tourism industry leaders have asked the government to extend and expand the visa waiver program introduced in 2015.

VnExpress reports that the Ho Chi Minh City Tourism Association has suggested that leaders should extend the program – currently offered to tourists from France, Germany, Spain, Italy and the United Kingdom – by making it available to other major markets as well, such as India and Australia.

In mid-2015 Vietnam began offering visitors from the five above-mentioned European countries 15-day, single-entry visa waivers. The program is currently set to expire at the end of July this year, according to the news source.

Nguyen Thi Khanh, vice chairwoman of the city's tourism association, is quoted telling the Saigon Times: "We suggest the government continue to extend the policy, at least through June 2018."

VnExpress adds that she also urged leaders to make a decision on the matter soon so businesses in the industry have time to adjust their plans, in addition to extending visa waivers to major markets like India and Australia.

Last year international arrivals to Vietnam hit a record 10 million, which Nguyen Van Tuan, head of the national tourism administration, credits in large part to the waiver program and other relaxed visa policies, according to the news source.

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