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Visa waivers lift Vietnam's foreign tourist arrivals

Visa waivers lift Vietnam's foreign tourist arrivals
Foreign tourists at an open-air restaurant in the ancient quarter of Hanoi. Photo by AFP

Foreign tourist arrivals in Vietnam have hit 8 million so far this year, official statistics show.

According to the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism, the figure is 25 percent higher than the same period last year.

The surge has been attributed to the country’s more relaxed visa requirements for foreign tourists.

Vietnam has extended visa waivers for tourists from Britain, Germany, France, Italy and Spain for trips of up to 15 days.

The number of Western European tourists has increased between 13 percent and 30 percent, said the tourism administration.

The country currently also provides a reciprocal visa exemption for citizens of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations. It has also waived visa requirements for visitors from the four Nordic countries and Russia, Belarus, Japan and South Korea.

China, Hong Kong and South Korea continue to be the country's top international tourist markets.

En Vnexpress