Visa free to Uzbekistan and residential permit for investors
Uzbekistan has introduced 30-days visa free entry for citizens from 45 countries starting from February 1st this year. The countries include the Vatican, Australia, Greece, Brazil and Switzerland. Meanwhile, German citizens could enter Uzbekistan without visa starting 15th January.
The visa free expansion was announced by Uzbek President Shavkat Mirziyoyev on January 5th this year in a bid to open the former Soviet Republic country to tourists and investors.
On February 10th 2018, Uzbekistan introduced visa waiver for Malaysia, Singapore, France, Indonesia, Japan, South Korea, Turkey and Israel.
In the same year, the Republic also eased the visa application procedure by introducing e-visa service for citizens of Europe, East Asia, India, the United States and the Middle East. Apart from the e-visa service, the country also removed the requirement for the letter of invitation and shortened the timeline of visa issuance.
According to Uzbek Ministry of Foreign Affairs, tourist numbers to the Republic has increased from 2.6 million to 5.3 million in 2018 after the introduction of free visa and e-visa.
The Ministry said it expects higher tourist numbers in 2019, although no expected figures were announced.
Meanwhile, Uzbekistan also announced that foreigners can obtain residence permit when purchasing real estate worth from US$200,000 in the Republic. The move is opened for citizens from 109 countries, including the United States and Kazakhstan.
Foreign investors who acquire stock and shares of Uzbek companies as well as businessmen who create international enterprise with an investment of not less than US$200,000 will be given a multiple entry visa for up to three years.