Unified GCC tourist visa to be introduced between 2024 and 2025


Abdullah bin Touq Al Marri, Minister of Economy, announced that the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries will implement a unified Gulf tourist visa within the next two years, which will allow visa holders to travel across the six Gulf countries.

Al-Marri said the seventh GCC tourism ministers meeting in Oman unanimously endorsed its implementation to be presented at the next GCC summit.

In a statement, the minister said visa-specific regulations and legislation will be developed, with targeted implementation between 2024 and 2025, subject to the readiness of each GCC country’s internal systems.

Al-Marri noted that this new visa will open doors for travelers, granting them access to six countries under a single unified tourist visa, ultimately fostering economic synergy across the Gulf region.

He said the UAE is preparing to welcome the new flow of international tourists with the introduction of the unified visa. He Emirates Tourism Council has formulated a tourist route within the UAE that interconnects its seven emirates, the minister said. This strategic move positions the UAE to be well prepared and equipped for integration with the GCC, by fully activating the unified tourist visa, thereby introducing a new and attractive tourism product to captivate international tourists in the Gulf region Arabic.

“This initiative is an integral part of the GCC 2030 tourism strategy, designed to raise the tourism sector’s contribution to GDP through increased travel between GCC countries and elevated hotel occupancy rates, transforming the GCC into a preeminent global destination for both regional destinations and international tourists”,

he UAE Minister aggregate.

The tourism sector’s current contribution to the UAE’s GDP is 14 per cent, with aspirations to raise this figure to 18 per cent to meet the nation’s strategic tourism goals.

Al-Marri He also highlighted that GCC countries possess sophisticated and qualified travel and tourism infrastructure. At the end of 2022, the GCC had a total of 10,649 hotel establishments, representing a growth of 1.2 percent compared to 2016. Within the GCC, the United Arab Emirates alone has 1,114 hotel establishments, ranking second place in the GCC after Saudi Arabia. The total number of hotel rooms in the GCC reached 674,832, growing by 0.4 per cent.

He further stated that the GCC joint tourism strategy “2023-2030” targets a 7 percent annual increase in inbound travel to GCC countries. The number of visitors to GCC countries reached 39.8 million last year, showing a growth of 136.6 percent compared to 2021, with the goal of reaching 128.7 million visitors by 2030.

GCC countries aim to increase inbound tourist spending by 8.0 percent annually. It is expected to reach $96.9 billion by the end of 2023, growing 12.8 percent compared to 2022, and reach $188 billion in 2030.

He clarified that GCC countries aim to increase the direct GDP contribution of the travel and tourism sector by 7 percent annually. The total value added to GDP of the travel and tourism sector of GCC countries is expected to reach $185.9 billion in 2023, growing by 8.5 percent compared to 2022, when it reached $171.4 billion. .

Al-Marri He noted that GCC countries have 837 tourist sites, of which the UAE has 399, making it the GCC leader in number of tourist sites. The UAE also hosts the most tourism events and activities in the GCC countries, with 73 tourism events out of a total of 224 in the Gulf region.

News source: Emirates News Agency


UAE News Today :

UAE News Today : Latest UAE News, Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Sharjah & Middle East News : Get the latest updates & breaking headlines news from across the UAE including Dubai and Abu Dhabi UAE. Get the latest update on UAE, business, life style, UAE jobs, gold rate, Exchange rate, UAE holidays, Dubai police, RTA and prayer times from UAE's largest news.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button