YANGON, Sept. 3 (Xinhua) -- Myanmar government will extend preliminary schemes of visa exemption for visitors from Japan and South Korea, and visa-on-arrival for those from China and India for one more year to Sept. 30, 2020, to attract more tourists to the country, according to an announcement of the Ministry of Hotels and Tourism late on Monday.
Visa exemption was initially allowed for visitors from Japan and South Korea and visa-on-arrival for those from China from Oct. 1, 2018 to Sept. 30, 2019.
Meanwhile, visa-on-arrival, granted for Indian tourists for one year from Dec. 1, 2018, will also be extended to Nov. 30, 2020, the announcement added.
The Ministry of Hotels and Tourism said in another earlier release in July that Myanmar authorities planned to grant visa-on-arrival to visitors from six more countries starting on Oct. 1 as a further relaxation of visa restriction on foreign visitors in addition to Asian ones to boost tourism.
The prior relaxation of visa restriction on Asian travelers have significantly prompted the increase of tourist arrivals in Myanmar in the first six months of 2019 to 2.14 million, up 420,000 compared with the same period of 2018 when 1.72 million entered the country, according to the figures from the ministry.
Myanmar attracted over 3.55 million foreign visitors in 2018, during which China topped the list of Asian travelers, followed by Thailand, the figures show.
The country targets to attract over seven million visitors by 2020.