More nations to get visa breaks


The Abe administration plans to relax visa requirements for Myanmar, Cambodia and Laos by the end of the year to help increase tourism, government sources said.

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is expected to unveil the plan next Tuesday at the same time he announces his decision on raising the consumption tax to 8 percent, the sources said Wednesday. It is increasingly looking like he will raise the tax in April as scheduled.

As part of the economic growth strategy hammered out in June, the Abe administration pledged to ease visa requirements to encourage more foreigners to visit Japan. In July, Japan exempted short-stay tourists from Thailand and Malaysia from having to obtain a visa.

The government is considering allowing the issuance of “multiple-entry visas” for visitors from Myanmar, Cambodia and Laos, the sources said.

  • Juandiego

    Because there certainly is a lot of potential for tourism from Myanmar, Cambodia or Laos, seeing that their average yearly incomes per capita are $1,200, $750 and $740 (compared to $17,000 for Japan). You can save an entire year and maybe you can afford half a day surviving in Tokyo. Unrealistic boost to tourism…