NZ to Join APEC Business Travel Card Scheme

  • John Delamare

Immigration Minister, Hon Tuariki Delamere, announced today that New Zealand will join the APEC Business Travel Card scheme.

"The card offers fast-track border service for business people from participating APEC economies," Mr. Delamere said.

Card-holders may apply for multiple visits of up to 3 months for a period of 3 years to any APEC economy which has joined the scheme. This means a saving of time and expense for someone who would normally have to apply for a visa for each trip.

"Although New Zealanders may already travel to many APEC economies without having to apply for a visa," Mr Delamere said, "the APEC Business Travel Card holder will have the additional benefit of the streamlined service through special APEC Card lanes at busy airports.

"This will be particularly useful as destinations such as Hong Kong and Manila. Business people visiting New Zealand will also get the same service."

Five of the 18 APEC economies have already joined the scheme: Australia, Chile, the Philippines, Hong Kong, and Korea.

Mr. Delamere said the actual timing of New Zealand's participation in the scheme will depend on a number of technical issues, such as establishing the necessary computer links with other countries.