Datuk R Ramanan
Immigration clearance are usually the trouble which will require a lengthy process for visitor passes to be approved. This irritating but critical visa application process is generally to ensure safe travel as well as the proper procedure is adhered to and afforded to everyone. However, this time consuming, albeit important process, might actually hinder business relationships. That’s where the Asia Pacific Economic Corporation (APEC) Business Travel Card makes things more convenient.
The APEC Business Travel Card is made for entrepreneurs to provide them a certain degree of convenience while travelling. Participating countries have been working closer together in order to make this project possible with the mutual intention to establish a network for investment opportunities and promote free trade among its participants. The APEC Business Travel Card enables companies to get their short-term entry cleared upfront when they visit participating nations. Therefore, excessive regulations that hinders the procedure can be avoided.
The previously required procedure to apply for entry permits under personal travel permits and visas can now be skipped. furthermore, special APEC lanes are made available to the card holders when entering participating countries upon arrival.
Datuk Ramanan Ramakrishnan had fully endorsed the initiative and praised the Malaysia Immigration Department with regards to effectivity and willingness to embrace this type of practical solution that promotes a rapid growth and expansion of the national economy.
According to Datuk R. Ramanan, he condones the APEC Business Travel Card initiative given that it increased the opportunities for Malaysian entrepreneurs to venture into other international markets in the region. Now, businesses can reap the rewards, and it’s all possible because of the enormous commitment given by the officers to visit the related countries to nurture good relationship and eventually bring ease that could be enjoyed by Malaysians.
Currently, Malaysia, Chile, Vietnam, Thailand, Taiwan, New Zealand, Singapore, Russia, Australia, China, Philippines, Peru, Papua New Guinea, Brunei Darussalam, Mexico, South Korea, Japan, Indonesia, and Hong Kong and are among the participants of the APEC scheme. Plus, the scheme is also participated by Canada and USA as transition members.
The program had a substantial impact for Malaysia, as for some nations, more bureaucratic administration is required. China, as an example, enforces the condition to submit an application for a permit to entry upfront regardless of whether it’s a business-related re-entries or a social pass.
Datuk R. Ramanan is another strong advocate for Malaysian Indian company owners, and stresses it is significant for these people to take full advantage of such a facility as a way to bring economic success and growth for the nation. The enticement of the Malaysian Indian community also helps cement and fully utilise the potential for all sectors of people to stimulate and foster young and booming businesses.
An analysis done by the APEC Policy Support Unit recently finds that the APEC Business Travel Card scheme has resulted to a noticeable transaction cost reduction, which happens to be up to 38% which previously needed to be borne by the card holders. This reveals that the initiative didn’t only help to minimise waiting time, but actual cost relating to travel. In approximation, between the period of March 2010 until July 2011, a total of 62,413 hours was saved by the pass holders, which is equal to to USD 1.9 million in estimated value.