Govt officials, diplomats to travel to Indonesia visa free

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…courtesy not extended to ordinary Guyanese

Guyana Government officials will no longer require a visa to travel to the Asian country, Indonesia. This was announced after Foreign Affairs Minister, Carl Grenidge signed an agreement between the Governments of Guyana and Indonesia on visa exemptions for holders of diplomatic and service passports.

The agreement was signed on Friday by Greenidge and Foreign Affairs Minister of the Republic of Indonesia, Retno L.P. Marsudi during the 73rd Session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York.

The agreement documents that “nationals of either country, holding valid diplomatic and service passports shall not be required to obtain a visa for entry into, exit from and stay in the territory or transiting through the borders of the other, for a period not exceeding 30 days.”

While Government officials and their high-level staffers will be granted this benefit, ordinary Guyanese citizens will still be required to go through the process of applying for a visa into the country, as the agreement allows for only holders of diplomatic and service passports to enter without the piece of document.

Back in May the two Ministers met where they fostered conversations on strengthening bilateral relations between the nations.

Guyana and Indonesia are said to have established formal diplomatic relations on 27 August 1999 and have collaborated in international fora such as the Non-Aligned Movement, the G-77 and China, and the United Nations, among other areas.

Early in 2017, the Arton Capital’s Passport Index ranking international had noted that Guyana’s passport allows its citizens to visit a total of 74 countries without a visa, giving it a ranking of 103 out of 199 countries.

The highest ranked South American nation is presently Brazil. Listed at number 40 with 143 destinations, Brazil jumped three places higher than the 2016 list.

In comparison to Guyana’s continental neighbours, only two other South American nations are ranked lower. These are Bolivia, at number 116 with 67 destinations; and Suriname, at 109 with 70 destinations. Barbados is the highest ranked Caribbean state, topping the region at number 50 with 132 destinations. Following closely are The Bahamas, at 53 with 129 destinations; Antigua and Barbuda, at 56 with 124 destinations, and St Kitts and Nevis, at 57 with 123 destinations. Trinidad and Tobago was ranked at 59, with 121 destinations.

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