As global leaders around the world continue to ease the lockdown measures put in place to curb the spread of the coronavirus pandemic, foreign travellers to Nigeria will need to acquaint themselves with the ‘new’ Visa Policy regime recently introduced by the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS).

The new Nigerian Visa Policy (NVP) was officially unveiled by President Muhammadu Buhari at the state house recently, after the presentation of the detailed and more comprehensive new visa policy was presented to the president by Comptroller General of Immigration, Muhammed Babandede.

Muhammed Babandede Comptroller General, NIS

Speaking during the presentation, president Buhari said “the implementation of the Nigeria Visa policy 2020 will support the attainment of globally competitive economy for Nigeria by building on the efforts of the Presidential Enabling Business Environment Council”. The new visa regime is structured to improve Nigeria’s business environment, attract Foreign Direct Investment and boost tourism without compromising national security.

The Comptroller General of the Nigeria Immigration Service, Muhammed Babandede while speaking at the presentation of the NVP also explained that the service had put in place, a technological hub called the Migrants Information and Data Analysis (MIDAS), to ensure strict compliance with the conditions for the issuance of visa to Nigeria. The new visa policy has 79 visa categories for various purposes; including health, education, tourism and others.              

In its effort to reach out to major user group of the new visa policy, the NIS made a robust presentation to members of the Diplomatic Community at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs during the official break-out briefing of COVID-19. The Assistant Comptroller-General, Visa & Residency Directorate, Mrs Victoria Isanghedighi, representing the Comptroller General used the occasion to explain and clarify the new regime to members of the diplomatic community.

Mrs. Victoria Isanghedighi

In her speech captioned “Keeping Pace with Global Dynamics of Visa Administration”, Mrs. Isanghedighi noted that, “In today’s fast-paced and competitive world, visa has become one of the key tools used by nations to spur economic growth and national development while ensuring national security”    

There is no doubt that indeed the new visa policy upon implementation will streamline visa issuance along international best practices, attract more Foreign Direct Investments (FDIs) into the country’s economy and also set the pathway for the actualization of President Muhammadu Buhari’s vision of taking 100 million Nigerians out of poverty in the next 10 years.

For further information and clarification about the new visa policy regime, visit https://portal.immigration.gov.ng/pages/welcome.

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