Visa-free deal sought with UAE

Visa-free deal sought with UAE

Thailand will seek talks with the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on the possibility of both nations initiating a visa-free programme between them, said Deputy Foreign Minister Jakkapong Sangmanee upon returning from the UAE on Saturday.

This would be part of the government's efforts to upgrade the power of Thai visas, said Mr Jakkapong, who was in the UAE from last Thursday until Saturday to attend a World Trade Organization conference.

The UAE is Thailand’s No.1 trade partner in the region, he said, adding that last year’s trade value between Thailand and the UAE was roughly US$19 billion (681.18 billion baht).

While Thailand continues its free-trade negotiations with the UAE, the visa-free programme should help improve convenience for travellers from both countries, he said.

Last year, almost 200,000 people from the UAE travelled into Thailand, while about five direct flights are now operating daily between the UAE and Thailand, he said.

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