Brazil is planning easier travel options for eligible Indian and Chinese tourists. The news comes just months after Brazil introduced visa waivers for American, Canadian, Japanese and Australian citizens and it is hoped that these proposed new measures for Chinese and Indian citizens will continue the nation’s upward trend in tourism numbers.
The following article investigates the suggested expansion of the country’s visa waiver policy and details the current process of acquiring a visa for Brazil as a Chinese or Indian tourist.
Who the New Proposals Could Apply to
As reported in The Rio Times, President Jair Bolsonaro’s government has indicated a desire to expand its new rules on visa-free travel for Australians, Japanese, American, and Canada further. The proposed idea is to extend this policy to fellow BRICS nationals from India and China holding valid visas from the newly visa-free countries.
This means travelers from India or China with an existing visa for Australia, Japan, Canada or the US, would be able to enter Brazil under the same or similar scheme as passport holders from the visa issuing country.
Since introducing visa-free travel for tourists from these four countries, Brazil has enjoyed a boost in the number of visitors traveling to the country for tourism. It is therefore hoped that by extending the project that these numbers will continue to increase further.
How the New Proposals Could be Implemented
As yet it is not yet known how the new system for Indian and Chinese citizens would be implemented. The plans still need to assessed and approved by Brazil’s Ministry of Tourism and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Itamaraty) and currently, no further proposals of how the process would function have been revealed.
It is possible that visa holders will simply be allowed access to the country with a valid visa from either Canada, Japan, the USA or Australia. Alternatively, it is possible that an electronic visa or visa waiver authorization may be required.
Prior to visa-waiver status being granted to the four countries, citizens were required to apply for a Brazil eVisa via an online application form. This granted authorization for visitors who adhered to the visa’s requirements to enter the country for up to 90 days for every calendar year. The visa itself was valid for 2 years.
It is possible this existing electronic infrastructure system could be repurposed for Indian and Chinese visa-holders to streamline the process of entering Brazil. Alternatively, another system formalizing and prescreening Indian and Chinese holders of US, Japanese, Australian or Canadian could be employed to ensure that they can pass through Brazilian immigration smoothly.
The Current Process of Traveling to Brazil
At present Chinese and Indian tourists traveling to Brazil must be in possession of a Brazilian visit visa (VIVIS) that has been obtained in advance of travel. This requires prospective visitors to apply for travel authorization directly from a Brazilian embassy, consulate or other diplomatic mission in their country of residence.
If approved, a Brazilian VIVIS for Chinese and Indian citizens allows a stay in the country for up to 90 days. It also permits the holder to travel to the country for business, transit and sporting purposes in addition to tourism.
It is quite likely Brazil will be in a position to capitalize on the rise of BRICS economies around the world if the proposed policy of relaxing the rules on Brazilian visas for eligible Chinese and Indian citizens comes to pass. With tourism reaching millions of more people around the world each year allowing greater access to the nation for prospective visitors could be a measure that really pays off.