Mar. 1 – India and Italy this week discussed each other’s business visa management and the simplification of the application process for citizens of both nations. The two countries wish to streamline the business visa process in order to provide their nationals with easier access to both markets.
India’s Ministry of Commerce and Industry and Italy’s Foreign Ministry are serious about making an effective business visa regime for businessmen and professionals. The Italian Foreign Minister is currently on a visit to India at the head of a business delegation mainly representing the construction sector.
The Italian Foreign Minister noted that visas are a significant bilateral issue and Italy is working on streamlining the process. Indian professionals mainly from the information technology sector often face issues while looking for visas to visit European countries.
Both countries had agreed last year to look at the possibility of using the certification from industry chambers to endorse the credentials for issuing business visas.
India’s Commerce and Industry Minister visited Italy last year and expressed concerns over the granting of visas. In turn, Italy had assured that flexibilities will be explored for granting long-term multiple entry visas under the new Schengen visa regime.
During the meeting, the Indian Minister also stressed the need for expediting the process for setting up joint working groups in various sectors. Last year, both sides had agreed to set up such groups in different sectors including infrastructure, manufacturing, ICT, innovation, pharmaceuticals and leather.
Bilateral trade between India and Italy stood at US$9 billion during 2010-11.
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