Australia has considerably eases the limitations of visa on the visitors from Indonesia for promoting the business and tourism connections between the two nations.
Peter Dutton, Australian Immigration Minister, was in Jakarta this week as part of the big investment and trade mission of Australia, had announced the multiple entry visa for the visitors from Indonesia which will be available from next year.
Visitors from Indonesia as of now should pay the nonrefundable application fee of around $125 for one year for single entry visa and should also fill up the 13-page application for the visa that is not available online.
Tourist operators have blamed the tricky and expensive system for the less number of visitors from Indonesia, comparing it with the $US35 visa on arrival for the visitors of Australia to Indonesia.
Previous year, around 15,200 people from Indonesia visited Australia while the tourists from Australia visiting Indonesia go beyond the figure of one million.
According to the Foreign Education Minister Richard Colbeck and Immigration Minister Peter Dutton, the online payments and registration for visa is being trialed in Indonesia and will soon become available to the travelers and business people.
Mr. Dutton said that this modification replicates the close relationship of Australia with Indonesia and as part of agenda of the government for boosting the tourism sector and minimizing the red tape.
He also told that the Australian government was not reconsidering its denials this year for free arrival visa for the travelers from Indonesia. Indonesia has offered free arrival visa to over 70 countries including Australia on the clause that same privilege would be available to the people from Indonesia who visit those nations.
The fee of $125 would stay for innovative three year visas, but Mr. Colbeck has pointed out that it can be reconsidered next year.
Mr. Colbeck expects that the easy arrangements for the visa would motivate many visits by the Indonesian families who are studying in Australia and would also boost the student numbers.
Around 14,000 tourists from Indonesia are studying in Australia, many of them at the universities and colleges, and each one of them generates 2 or 3 visits on an average, which makes the student family visits one of the biggest components of travel by the people of Indonesia to Australia.
According to Mr. Colbeck, visits of Indonesian tourists was growing at the healthy rate of 6% per year and presently it has generated around $600 million worth of activity related to economy in Australia. He also said that this week’s mission of trade in Jakarta has also generated the discussions with the air carriers about raising the destinations and the frequencies of the flights between the two nations.