March began with good news for Indian citizens residing in Oman: they will be granted visa-on-arrival in Yerevan when they choose to travel to Armenia. Previously, only Omani citizens enjoyed the perks of visa-on-arrival, but the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Armenia issued an update late February 2017, offering visa-on-arrival privileges to citizens of India who hold a residence permit in the United Arab Emirates, the Kingdom of Bahrain, the State of Qatar, the State of Kuwait, and the Sultanate of Oman. Residents of these countries can rely on Qatar Airways, flydubai, and Air Arabia, among some others, for easy connections with Yerevan.
Oman is a small nation of about 4 million people, with 2.23 million Omani nationals and 1.76 million expatriates, including Indian, Pakistani, Sri Lankan, Bangladeshi and others. Armenia itself is rather small, and most visitors to the country arrive from neighboring Georgia, Azerbaijan, and Turkey. With new visa-on-arrival regulation in place, the potential for tourism growth between the destinations becomes apparent. It is too early to see how much this will impact the statistics in 2017, but we’ll keep an eye on the official reports due to be released in the near future.
Yerevan is a surprisingly charming capital, with amazing Soviet architecture and century-old historic attractions, some lucky to have survived the devastating Earthquake of 1679. Must see attractions include the Erebuni Fortress, the Red Bridge of Hrazdan River, and the Gök Jami Blue Mosque, the only operating mosque in the country.
There’s a lot of business tourism interest for Yerevan too; in fact business tourism is considered at the top of the most dynamic sectors in Armenia. In this regard, Armenia Travel notes:
Geographic location of Armenia stimulates the development of active economic relations with Russia, CIS countries, European Union, USA, Georgia, Iran and countries of the Middle East. Armenia is a member of WTO and other international organizations.
Visa-on-arrival privileges for Indian citizens residing in the United Arab Emirates, the Kingdom of Bahrain, the State of Qatar, the State of Kuwait, and the Sultanate of Oman will certainly add a plus to the said dynamism. We will follow up with statistics and updates.