The decree of Interim President of the Republic of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoev dated December 2, 2016 approved measures to ensure accelerated development of the tourism industry of the Republic of Uzbekistan.
The major turning point of the Decree provides for a radical liberalization of the visa policy of the state aimed at improving the country’s attractiveness to foreign tourists, including:
– from 1 April, 2017, full abolishment of the visa regime for tourists from 15 countries, including Australia, Austria, UK, Germany, Denmark, Spain, Italy, Canada, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Republic of Korea, Singapore, Finland, Switzerland and Japan, as well as for tourists from 12 countries, aged 55 years, including Belgium, Indonesia, China (as part of tourist groups), Malaysia, USA, France, Vietnam, Israel, Poland, Hungary, Portugal and the Czech Republic. Visa-free regime will be applied to foreign citizens arriving in the Republic for tourist purposes for a period not exceeding 30 days;
– introduction of a unified tourist visa for all countries issued for a period of 30 days, a significant simplification of the procedure of obtaining visas, including with the use of online registration for a visa, as well as the introduction of the system of electronic visas in 2018.
These rules are designed to promote a positive image of Uzbekistan in the sphere of tourism, to significantly increase the tourist flow into the country, and to strengthen business activity in the industry.
Dramatically increasing the quality and level of services at airports, railway stations and other checkpoints across the state border are considered as a significant factor in the creation of favorable conditions for foreign tourists, when they arrive in the country. To this end, the decree provides:
– until April 1, 2017, adoption of necessary measures for the implementation of “green corridors” for foreign tourists at the international airports of Tashkent, Samarkand, Bukhara and Urgench, as well as simplification of passport and customs control, baggage claim procedures and improvement of transport services;
– organization of separate passport control for residents and non-residents at airports and railway stations;
– creation and development of tourist information environment, including activities of tourist information points at airports and train stations.
The implementation of these measures are aimed at ensuring the quality of services at major transport hubs to world standards, raising the rating of international airports and railway stations of the country.