Fast-tracking business travel to the United States
Released on = November 20, 2006, 1:29 am
Press Release Author = Ryan Rebutica
Industry = Government
Press Release Summary = Business travel to the United States is about to become easier.
Press Release Body = Business travel to the United States is about to become easier.
It follows an announcement that the United States will join 17 other Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation economies in providing APEC Business Travel Cardholders access to 'fast track' immigration processing lanes on arrival and departure.
Minister for Immigration and Multicultural Affairs Amanda Vanstone today welcomed US recognition of the card, announced on the weekend by US President George W. Bush at the APEC Leaders' Meeting in Hanoi, Vietnam.
'Cardholders will now be given access to special immigration lanes to speed up processing at international airports in the United States,' Senator Vanstone said today.
'The United States is Australia's single most important economic partner.
'By streamlining business travel we are reducing the cost of doing business and helping Australian companies to maximise opportunities.'
Senator Vanstone said the APEC card was an Australian-led initiative and was a practical example of APEC member economies working together to simplify business travel and promote regional business activity.
'The APEC Business Travel Card provides approved business people with streamlined travel to and from participating economies,' Senator Vanstone said.
'The card is the size of a credit card, contains personal identity details and is valid for three years.'
Economies already participating in the scheme are Australia, Brunei, Chile, the People's Republic of China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Republic of Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Peru, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Chinese Taipei and Vietnam.
Cardholders will still need to present valid passports and visas if required by existing United States law. Australian business people may travel to the United States for 90 days or less without obtaining a visa under its Visa Waiver Program.
Web Site = http://www.nationalvisas.com.au
Contact Details = National Visas Web site: http://www.nationalvisas.com.au Address: 3 - 118 Church Street Hawthorn, Victoria Australia 3122 Phone: +61 (0) 3 9697 4922 Fax: +61 (0) 3 9815 1544