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Brazil announces electronic visa to attract more tourists

After last year’s tourist boom in Brazil, the Government of Brazil has begun discussing possible measures to introduce in the tourist industry. These measures plan to maintain the momentum that brought 6.5 million foreign travelers to the Latinamerican giant in 2016 thanks to the Olympic Games.

Plan for Tourism in Brazil

The ‘Brazil + Tourism’ program will include:

  • the issuance of electronic visas,
  • the expansion of regional air networks
  • and the acceptance of foreign investment for 100% of Brazilian airline capital (as opposed to the current 20%).

Tourism Minister Marx Beltrão stated that this new program will correct “a historical myopia that the government has (had) with Brazilian tourism”. The Tourism Minister hopes that it will allow the country to grow, expecting a rise to twelve million foreign visitors to Brazil by 2022.

The Minister also indicated that Brazilian tourist revenue would grow from the current $6 billion USD to $19 billion in that same period.

“We have about thirteen million unemployed, and tourism can provide quick answers by generating employment,” Beltrão announced in the press conference of the ‘Brazil + Tourism’ program.

Foreign Investment in Brazil's Airlines

The idea for allowing 100% of foreign investment in Brazil’s airline industry was initially introduced in January this year. However, due to a period of instability between the Administration and Brazilian politicians, the order has yet to be signed by President Temer.

The aim of this part of the Brazilian tourism development program is to “increase the competitiveness among companies and consequently reduce prices and offer more routes and destinations,” as explained by Beltrão.

Introduction of eVisa for Brazil

The Ministry of Tourism of Brazil has proposed the introduction of an electronic visa. The launch of the eVisa will allow foreign nationals from various countries to apply online for a tourist visa to Brazil. The US, Canada, Australia and Japan will be among the eligible countries.

Brazilian Electronic Visa Application Process

The online application would be somewhat similar to electronic visa systems in other countries. Electonic visa schemes like the ESTA in the US or the Australian ETA permit eligible travelers to apply through a simple online form. They must answer security questions and provide basic personal and travel information before being sent their eVisa via e-mail.

The plan for the electronic visa for Brazil is to allow tourists to process their visa request online. It would also permit payment of the visa fee via credit or debit card. And finally, the applicant would receive the approved Brazil visa online, all within a 48-hour window.

Possibility of Visa-Waiver for Brazil

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Tourism are st"Order and Progress" is the Brazilian Tourist Industryill debating the inclusion of other countries in this measure. Countries such as China and India remain undefined. Also on the table is the possibility of installing a visa waiver program. This system would be like the one in place during the 2016 Olympics.