Visa-free regime between Kazakhstan and China to enter into force starting from November 10

Senior correspondent for General News department
The two countries have negotiated a visa-free regime that is going to enter into force next month / Photo: Freepik and Shutterstock

How will the visa-free regime work? Kazakhstan and China will cancel visa requirements for citizens of the two countries who travel in either direction if their purpose of the visit is medical treatment, business or private trips, transit or tourism. They will be allowed to stay in the other country for no longer than 90 days within a 180-day period.

The context. In April 2023, some media outlets reported that Kazakhstan was going to sign a 30-day visa-free regime agreement with China.

The signing of the document was held on May 18, during the official visit of President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev to China. At the time, Tokayev said that thanks to this one-month visa-free regime Kazakhstan would be able to become one of the most attractive destinations for Chinese tourists.

However, some people in Kazakhstan weren’t happy with the decision as they were afraid of the huge influx of Chinese. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs responded that the agreement doesn’t allow Chinese citizens to work or live in the country. The move is aimed at promoting tourism and facilitating those Kazakhstanis who often travel to China for business purposes. 

On October 19, Tokayev met with Ma Xingrui, a high-ranking Chinese official in the Xinjiang province. During the meeting, he said that Kazakhstani-Chinese cooperation in the sphere of tourism is very promising for both sides. The president also highlighted that a new Ministry of Tourism and Sports has been established with this idea in mind.

«We hope that the flow of tourists from China to Kazakhstan will grow. Next year is going to be a year of Kazakhstan’s tourism in China. We are going to facilitate those Kazakhstanis who want to visit your country,» he underlined.

Moreover, the European Union also has a «great interest» in a visa-free regime with Kazakhstan, but so far it is impossible except for a shorter process of visa consideration, according to the Foreign Ministry of Kazakhstan.

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