Muscat: The Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced on Wednesday that visa validity period for tourists and businessmen from Oman visiting the United States has now been extended from current two years to 10 years.
This is the highest period that can be granted to any visitor to the US. The new procedure also includes the extension of official visas to five years instead of two years and applying the principle of reciprocity to US citizens.
At a joint press conference of the Sultanate and the US embassy on Wednesday, Dr Mohammed al Hassan, the Sultanate’s Permanent Representative to the UN in New York, said that the move reflects the strong and friendly relations between the two governments and peoples. “It will facilitate the progress being made in the tourism, business and investment sectors”, he said.
According to Al Hassan, the new facility will support the free trade agreement between the two countries. “This move will facilitate many aspects of trade, tourism and investment. It will also have a very positive impact on both sides. It is the continuation of previous steps aimed at strengthening relations between the two countries to be followed by subsequent steps”, he said.
Present at the event was Marc J Sievers, the US Ambassador to Oman who also pointed out that the diplomat visa is extended to five years, which indicates the strong historical and diplomatic relations dated back to 1840.
Al Hassan mentioned that the students’ visa doesn’t follow the same procedures because they are engaged with a specific duration and separate college’s rules and standards. He praised on the role of Royal Oman Police for easing the procedures and their effective collaboration.
It is worth noting that the United States had already applied the new visa change from January 1, 2019 and Oman resumed activating the same from Wednesday.