Home / Front Page/ JVP questions free visa on arrival facility for tourists

JVP questions free visa on arrival facility for tourists

Comments / {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}} Views / Saturday, 6 April 2019 00:05

  • Voices concern about increased reports of foreigners in illegal activities 
  • Warns state would lose millions by granting free visas
  • Questions if evaluation carried out before putting new rule in place


The JVP lawmaker on Thursday questioned the Government decision to grant free visas valid for up to six months to tourists from select countries amidst reports of an increase indrug trafficking, bio-piracy, and financial frauds along with other criminal activities by foreign nationals.

The Government announced recently that the free visa facility will apply to nationals of Thailand, the UK, Australia, South Korea, Canada, the US, Singapore, Malaysia, New Zealand and EU passport holders. The move is aimed at increasing tourist arrivals in the country. 

Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) MP Bimal Rathnayake taking part in the Committee Stage Program of Budget 2019 demanded an explanation from the Government on what grounds it has decided to commence issuing the six months free visa. The new system will become effective from this month. 

“A tourist has to pay $ 30 to obtain a visit visa to Sri Lanka. The decision to issue free visas to selected countries will lead to the loss of millions of foreign currency. I wonder why these tourists are unable to pay $30 to obtain a visa to enter Sri Lanka. It is questionable what these tourists are willing to spend here in Sri Lanka after entering with free visa,” he said. The JVP lawmakers questioned if the Government has any plan to recover the loss incurred from issuing the free visa. “Did the Government carry out an evaluation to measure the income we can gain after this decision? Otherwise, we will lose the income we gain at the moment from tourism,” he added. (AH) 

Share This Article

Facebook Twitter


1. All comments will be moderated by the Daily FT Web Editor.

2. Comments that are abusive, obscene, incendiary, defamatory or irrelevant will not be published.

3. We may remove hyperlinks within comments.

4. Kindly use a genuine email ID and provide your name.

5. Spamming the comments section under different user names may result in being blacklisted.


Today's Columnists

Jothipala A unique playback singer who sang to joy, emotion and grief

Saturday, 29 February 2020

“Poruthukeesi Karaya, Ratawal Allanna Sooraya,” the lilting Baila song from ‘Sandesaya’ was the first Sinhala film song that I became immensely fond of as a little boy. I did not see the film ‘Sandesaya’ when it was first released in 196

For the love of my motherland Sri Lanka

Saturday, 29 February 2020

It is Monday 25 February 2020 as I hunt-and-peck my computer keyboard at Colombo International Airport Terminal 12 awaiting my flight to New York with my wife to attend a family funeral. I had been catching up on yester

China’s virus shutdown will hurt growth abroad

Friday, 28 February 2020

Many affluent Chinese fearful of being infected by the coronavirus and being quarantined by the State are staying home. Many companies and countries around the world are linked to the Chinese economy, which is likely to have far-reaching consequences

The reality of the system

Friday, 28 February 2020

The whole system of the country which has been crumbling is now on the verge of near collapse. The political regime, bureaucracy, intellectuals and the society in general did not have a sufficiently developed political imagination to understand the n

Columnists More