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FG Announces Plan To Review Visa Policy To Attract Foreign Investments

Nigerian Passport's Validity Now 10 Years - Buhari

THE Federal Government has announced plans to conduct a thorough evaluation of the country’s visa policy in order to enhance foreign investments and promote tourism.

Trojan News understands that last year’s visitor numbers were deemed inadequate in relation to the country’s population, resources, and potential, prompting the need for a review of the visa policy to align with President Bola Tinubu’s Renewed Hope Agenda.

Speaking during a stakeholders consultative meeting on Nigeria visa held at Transcorp Hotel in Abuja during the weekend, the Minister of Interior, Dr Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo, said: “We are determined to make sure that in the next couple of weeks, by the grace of God, the new implementation framework will be on ground.


“And people all over the world will start having easy access to the country. We want to welcome investment and people.

“Just last year, the number of foreign passengers that came to Nigeria whether Nigerians or non, was just less than two million people.

“That is unacceptable for a country of over 200 million people. It means that we are limiting investment and import of forex, among other things.

“So, once we get the visa policy right, and we get the implementation framework perfect, then definitely the economic prosperity will come.”

The Minister also emphasized the importance of implementing a visa policy that promotes investments and tourism in Nigeria, while ensuring the safety and security of the country is not compromised.

He said that though striking a balance between easy access to visas and national security was difficult considering its delicate nature, “if gotten right, it would no doubt lead to a healthy investment promotion for Nigeria.

“You see, a seamless access to any country is key for investment promotion, job creation, foreign direct investment. In short is key to whatever a particular country wants to do or achieve to enable it progress.

“The logic is that everything is built on effective visa administration. So, we are here to really talk about it and to be able to streamline the process for the better.

“Especially, in areas of short stay visa and even our other categories of visa to see how we can optimise them and make it more efficient in such a way that will be able to attract more investment.”

Tunji-Ojo also emphasized that successful implementation of this plan would not only boost tourism and infrastructure development but also enhance our national security framework, thereby achieving a well-rounded approach.

The Minister reiterated the government’s commitment to making Nigeria’s visa policy the most exceptional globally, leaving no stone unturned until this goal is accomplished.

He said: “The renewed hope is about business unusual, it is about prioritising Nigeria by making sure that it is the best in the world and that is exactly what we are trying to achieve.

“It is one thing to have a policy, but it is another thing to be able to implement it.

“So, we are gathered here today to deliberate on the need to use technology to reduce the waiting time to get a short-stay visa, business visa, tourism, as well as entertainment.

“And how easy is it going to be for them to have access to their application mechanism? Why must somebody need to travel from British Columbia in Canada all the way to Ottawa, just because you want a Nigerian visa.

“What are the reasons today people go to Qatar, UK and Singapore even more than the way people go to Europe; it is because there is easier access.

“So, creating the right framework and having that benchmark that will be competitive, comparable with the best in the world, that is exactly what we aim to achieve.

“We want to assure Nigerians that this is not just a workshop; we are not just here to talk, but to actualise it.”

The Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Interior, Dr Aishetu Ndayako, said the review has become necessary given the importance of visas to a country’s overall development.

“We are here today to discuss the significance of our collective efforts in shaping the future of visa regulations and procedures that have a profound impact on individuals, businesses and the nation as a whole,” she said.

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