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Sri Lanka extends visa validity to May 12 for foreigners

Nafaahath Ibrahim
02 April 2020, MVT 16:34
Bandaranaike International Airport. PHOTO: AFP
Nafaahath Ibrahim
02 April 2020, MVT 16:34

The government of Sri Lanka on Wednesday, announced their decision to extend the validity period for all types of visas granted to foreigners residing in the country, by an additional 30 days.

This is the second occasion visa validity periods were extended by Sri Lanka over COVID-19 concerns. In the first round, extensions were granted for a period of 30 days from March 14 to April 12. Hence, with the second extension, foreign-held visas will be valid until May 12.

Although the previous announcement advised any individuals acquiring the 30-day extension to visit the Visa Division of Sri Lanka's Department of Immigration to pay required fees and have their passports stamped, the new statement urges against visiting the office.

As per the statement, the procedure to pay the relevant visa fee and to get the visa endorsed in the passport will be informed at a later date.

In the event that an individual wishes to leave during the aforementioned period; their journey will be facilitated by paying the relevant visa fee at the airport without incurring any penalty charges.

The extension is intended to address difficulties caused by the cancellation of numerous international flights.

Sri Lanka is the most-frequented destination for Maldivians travelling abroad for both medical purposes as well as for vacation. Approximately 13,000 Maldivians presently reside in Sri Lanka for education and work.

Presently, Sri Lanka has 124 recorded cases, out of which 21 people recovered and claimed the lives of three.

Meanwhile, Maldives records 19 confirmed and six active cases of COVID-19, with a total of 13 recoveries. While there are two confirmed cases of Maldivians, no local to local transmissions have been recorded.

The World Health Organization has classified the spread of COVID-19 as a global pandemic. The novel coronavirus has infected over 938,348 people and claimed over 47,286 lives around the world. However, out of those infected, more than 195,371 people have recovered.

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