Datuk Ramanan Ramakrishnan Promotes APEC Travel Card Initiatives
Datuk Raman’s Impression on APEC Business Card
Obtaining clearance for immigration was commonly viewed as an issue because of the lengthy process visitor passes took to be approved. Despite its difficulty, such protocol of visa application is vital to ensure safe passage and proper procedure. This had become an obstacle to maintain good business connections. Finally, concerns from the stakeholders had led to the introduction of the Asia Pacific Economic Corporation (APEC) Business Travel Card to wipe out the complications.
The APEC Business Travel Card is made for businesspeople to provide them a certain degree of convenience while travelling. Participating countries have been working closer together in making this project possible with the mutual aim to create a network for investment opportunities and promote free trade among its participating nations. The APEC Business Travel Card enables businesses to have their short-term entry cleared beforehand once they visit participating nations. For that reason, excessive regulations that hinders the process can be avoided.
The entire process of application for visas as well as entry permits under personal travel could in fact be skipped by individuals, and card holders can use this multi-entry passes to use the designated APEC lanes upon arrival at the listed nations.
This project is fully supported by Datuk Ramanan, who has lauded the efficient immigration of Malaysia for enabling a much more convenient resolution to the expansion and growth of the economy.
According to Datuk R. Ramanan, he condones the APEC Business Travel Card initiative given it increased the opportunities for Malaysian people who run businesses to go to other international markets within the region. Now, businesses can reap the rewards, and it is all possible simply because of the remarkable commitment given by the officers to visit the relevant countries to nurture good relationship and eventually bring ease which can be enjoyed by Malaysians.
Malaysia, Brunei, Singapore, Thailand, Indonesia, China, South Korea, Philippines, Japan, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Taiwan, New Zealand, Russia, Australia, Peru, Papua New Guinea, Mexico, and Chile are currently among the participating nations of the APEC scheme. In the meantime, USA and Canada have joined as transition members.
The programme had a big effect for Malaysia, as for some states, more bureaucratic administration is established. The Republic of China, to provide an example, enforces the condition to make an application for a permit to entry in advance irrespective of whether it’s a business-related re-entries or just a social pass.
Corresponding to a study conducted by the Support Unit of APEC policy, the schemes brought out by the APEC Business Travel Card has led to a considerable minimization in cost of transaction for card holders up to 38%. This proves that all of these efforts not just function in reducing waiting time, but actual travel cost as well. Experts agree it is estimated that the time saved for these particular card holders in March 2010 to July 2011 is 62,413 hours, which happens to be estimated at a value of USD1.9 million.
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