In a major breakthrough towards easing visa complexity, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) has introduced e-visa, eliminating visa stickers for work, visits and transit for Bangladeshis.
Announcing the facilities at a press conference in Dhaka on Monday, Ambassador of KSA to Bangladesh Essa Yousef Essa Alduhailan said Bangladesh becomes the first country to get e-visa facilities from Saudi Arabia.
Saudi Arabia is currently hosting over two million Bangladeshi expatriate workers, who have long been contributing to economic development for both the KSA and Bangladesh.
Ambassador Essa Yousef Essa Alduhailan said introduction of error-free e-visa, using both Arabic and English language, will reduce hassle, cost and time to get Saudi visas. It will remove many confusions of people, especially the workers, as details of the visa, duration, category etc will be clearly mentioned in the new visa system.
He said the Saudi government spends huge amount of money to issue sticker visas while printing of such sticker is a difficult task. But introduction of the e-visa will eliminate the issues of additional expenditure.
The Saudi Envoy said it will be a win-win situation for the intending Bangladeshi workers and other stakeholders, including the recruiting agencies. KSA is keen to work with Bangladesh for betterment of the Bangladeshi workers, he added.
It may be mentioned that earlier the Saudi Arabia had introduced the e-visa facilities only for Umrah visa.
He said the Saudi government has plans to introduce a similar e-visa system in other countries eventually.
Bureau of Manpower, Employment and Training (BMET) Director General Shahidul Alam, Director General at the Foreign Ministry Shafiqur Rahman and others also spoke on the occasion.