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Land of Welcome: Malaysia Opens Doors with Visa-Free Entry for Chinese and Indian Nationals Starting December 1

Malaysia Extends a Friendly Hand: Visa-Free Entry Granted to Chinese and Indian Nationals from December 1

KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 27 (Reuters) — In a significant move to enhance diplomatic ties and promote tourism, Malaysia is set to offer visa-free entry to citizens of China and India for stays of up to 30 days, effective from December 1. Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim announced this development during a speech at the People's Justice Party congress on Sunday. While the duration of the visa exemption was not specified, the initiative is anticipated to foster stronger relations between Malaysia and two of its key international partners.

China and India stand as Malaysia's fourth and fifth-largest source markets, respectively. Government data reveals that between January and June this year, Malaysia welcomed 9.16 million tourists, with 498,540 arriving from China and 283,885 from India. This marks a significant recovery compared to the same period in 2019, reflecting the nation's resilience in overcoming pandemic-related challenges.

The decision aligns with a broader regional trend, echoing measures taken by neighboring Thailand to invigorate its crucial tourism sector and stimulate economic activity. The exemption for Chinese and Indian nationals from visa requirements is poised to streamline travel processes, making Malaysia a more accessible and attractive destination.

As of now, Chinese and Indian nationals are required to go through the visa application process to enter Malaysia. The new policy not only simplifies entry procedures but is also expected to bolster Malaysia's tourism sector and contribute to the broader economic recovery. This move reflects Malaysia's commitment to fostering international relationships and creating a welcoming environment for visitors from key partner nations.

Reporting by Danial Azhar; Editing by Martin Petty

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

In conclusion, Malaysia's decision to grant visa-free entry to Chinese and Indian nationals for up to 30 days, effective December 1, marks a significant step in fostering international relationships and promoting tourism. Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim's announcement during the People's Justice Party congress reflects Malaysia's commitment to creating a more accessible and welcoming environment for visitors from two of its major international partners.

The move is not only expected to streamline travel procedures but also has the potential to significantly boost Malaysia's tourism sector, contributing to the nation's broader economic recovery. By aligning with regional trends, exemplified by similar measures in neighboring Thailand, Malaysia aims to stimulate economic activity and further position itself as an attractive destination for tourists.

The statistics showcasing a rebound in tourist arrivals from China and India compared to pre-pandemic levels underscore the resilience of Malaysia's tourism industry. This positive trajectory is likely to be reinforced by the visa-free entry initiative, simplifying the process for Chinese and Indian nationals and enhancing the overall appeal of Malaysia as a travel destination.

As the nation opens its doors wider to international visitors, the initiative stands as a testament to Malaysia's proactive approach in adapting to changing global dynamics and leveraging tourism as a catalyst for economic revitalization. The move aligns with the broader vision of creating stronger ties with key partner nations and fostering a spirit of international cooperation.

Reporting by Danial Azhar; Editing by Martin Petty

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.