Qatar resumes visa on arrival for Pakistanis

Staff Report

ISLAMABAD: Qatar has resumed its visa-on-arrival facility for Pakistani travellers, it emerged on Thursday. In an alert sent to trade partners, Qatar Airways while quoting Qatar’s immigration policy said Pakistani nationals could obtain a tourist visa valid for 30 days by paying a fee of QAR 100, which can be extended for a similar period. In order to avail the facility, Pakistani travellers will need a passport valid for at least six months, confirmed return ticket, polio vaccination certificate and confirmed hotel reservation.
They will also be required to be fully vaccinated against Covid-19 with vaccines approved by Qatar’s Ministry of Public Health, having completed a period of 14 days after the last dose before travel. Travellers will need to present negative PCR test results carried out within 48 hours prior to arrival.
According to the notice, travellers will have to undergo electronic registration on the Ehteraz platform to obtain the public health ministry’s approval before travelling. Passengers who have not received both doses of the vaccine 14 days prior to arrival will not be allowed entry.
According to information available on Qatar Airways’ website, approved Vaccines are Pfizer/BioNTech (Comernate), Moderna (Spikefax), AstraZeneca (Coveshield/Oxford/Vaxepheria), Janssen/Johnson & Johnson (One dose), while Sinopharm is categorized as Conditionally approved vaccines.
Later in the day, the United Arab Emirates has withdrawn its requirement binding all Pakistani travellers to get their Covid-19 vaccination certificates attested by the Foreign Office and the UAE embassy starting August 1, hours after news of the condition became public.
The order was withdrawn after the Foreign Office took up the matter with UAE authorities. Both FO spokesperson Zahid Hafeez Chaudhri and UAE Ambassador to Pakistan Hamad Obaid Ibrahim Salem Al-Zaabi confirmed that the condition had been reversed.
Attestation of vaccination certificates by the FO and the UAE embassy will not be mandatory for Pakistani travellers, Al-Zaabi told media. He said travellers would be required to carry only the vaccination certificate issued by the National Database & Registration Authority (Nadra) once the flight operation from Pakistan is resumed.
Meanwhile, the UAE embassy in Islamabad in a tweet said “the vaccination certificate of Covid-19 is not considered currently a requirement for travel to the UAE.”
Earlier, the UAE authorities had conveyed to the Government of Pakistan to required all visitors from August 1 to get their vaccination certificates attested by the FO and the UAE embassy before proceeding with other paperwork.