Travel to NZ made easier for Indian business visitors

  • Michael Woodhouse
  • Paula Bennett
Tourism Immigration

Associate Tourism Minister Paula Bennett and Immigration Minister Michael Woodhouse say Indian nationals travelling to New Zealand on business will now find it easier and faster to get a visa.

Visitors travelling for recognised business events, like conferences, meetings or exhibitions, will now benefit from faster visa processing times and reduced paperwork requirements.

The new arrangements were formalised with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) in Mumbai overnight between Immigration New Zealand, Tourism New Zealand and six approved travel agents.

Immigration Minister Michael Woodhouse, who was at the signing, says New Zealand is a fantastic destination for business travellers, with substantial growth underway in conference facilities in Auckland, Christchurch and Queenstown.

“The Tourism Industry Partnership launched with this MOU will allow the visas of Indian business travellers to be processed in just three days, and reduces the paperwork they need to provide with a letter of support from an approved travel agent replacing the requirement for proof of funds and employment.”

“This agreement sends a clear message that New Zealand welcomes these high value visitors and supports the initiatives to grow the Business Events sector which is one of Tourism New Zealand’s strategic priority areas,” Mr Woodhouse says.

The six approved travel agents have been selected on their ability to attract high value and low risk Business Event visitors to New Zealand.   

Associate Tourism Minister Paula Bennett says that international tourism is one of our most important industries and is worth around $10 billion a year. However of the 35,000 visits by Indians to New Zealand in the past year, just 500 travelled for business.

“Increasing the number of visitors and migrants from major markets such as India is a key priority to growing the economy,” Mrs Bennett says.  

“We’ve seen a huge increase in Indian nationals coming to New Zealand to live, work, sightsee and study, and this agreement will open up opportunities for more business travel and the high returns that come with that.”

“Our Business Events programme aims to see more people, companies, and organisations viewing New Zealand as an attractive location for their meetings and conferences, and this Partnership is a step in the right direction.”