Sri Lanka has assured the Maldives that Maldivians travelling to Sri Lanka will be granted 90-day on-arrival visas without any additional fees, in accordance with the visa facilitation agreement signed between the two countries.

Sri Lanka’s Minister of Public Security Tiran Alles assured the Maldives’ Foreign Minister Moosa Zameer of the change during a meeting held on Thursday to discuss difficulties being faced by Maldivians in obtaining visas to Sri Lanka due to recent changes to the nation’s on-arrival visa process.

Zameer on Thursday concluded an official visit to Sri Lanka at the invitation of Sri Lankan Foreign Minister Mohamed Uvais Mohamed Ali Sabry.

Zameer, in his meeting with Alles, also highlighted that Maldivian students in Sri Lanka, as well as their families, were facing difficulties in obtaining visas. Alles assured the Maldivian Minister that a swift solution would be found for annual visas to Maldivian students studying in Sri Lanka.

Sri Lanka recently migrated to an e-visa system; a process which has been outsourced to be administered by a private company. The new system, with the introduction of fees, as well as other administrative requirements, which had previously not been applicable to Maldivians, had caused concern and confusion among Maldivians residing in Sri Lanka for education and other purposes, as well as among those who frequently travel to the neighbouring nation.