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Qatar relaxes visa policy for Pakistan amid Gulf boycott

07:33 PM | 30 Aug, 2017
Qatar relaxes visa policy for Pakistan amid Gulf boycott
DOHA/ISLAMABAD - Relaxing the policies for brother Muslim nation, Qatar has introduced visa on arrival for Pakistani nationals to attract more tourists and business people to the tiny emirate.

Nationals of Pakistan can now obtain a visa on arrival for a maximum stay of 30 days. They must have a passport valid for a minimum of 6 months from the arrival date; and a return/onward ticket.

They can apply to extend their stay for an additional 30 days.

Earlier this month, Qatar introduced visa-free entry to the residents of 80 countries and surprisingly Pakistan was not in the list. The decision came into effect after Qatar faced diplomatic isolation by its Arab neighbours.

The nationals of following 33 countries will be authorized to stay in Qatar for 180 days:

Austria, Bahamas, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Seychelles, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and Turkey.

However, the residents of the following 47 nations can stay for up to 30 days:

Andorra, Argentina, Australia, Belarus, Bolivia, Brazil, Brunei, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, Ecuador, Panama, Costa Rica, Gerogia, Guyana, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Japan, Kazakhstan, Lebanon, Azerbaijan, Macedonia, Malaysia, Maldives, Mexico, Moldova, Monaco, New Zealand, Paraguay, Peru, Russia, San Marino, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Suriname, Cuba, Thailand, Ukraine, United Kingdom, United States, Uruguay, Vatican City and Venezuela.

Qatar's action drew protests from Islamabad, but Doha has remained unmoved. Kuwait, another GCC favourite, has placed visa restrictions on Pakistanis since 2011.

While they don't call it a visa ban, since now Pakistanis have to go through much stricter scrutiny than other countries' citizens. Former PM Nawaz Sharif personally intervened in March 2017 with the Kuwaiti leadership, but despite promises of review, Pakistanis continue to stay on the restricted list.

The writer is a member of the staff.

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Rupee exchange rate to US Dollar, Euro, Pound, Dirham, and Riyal - 2 March 2024

Pakistani rupee remains largely stable against USD and other currencies in the open market on March 2, 2024 (Saturday).

US Dollar rate in Pakistan

In the open market, the US dollar was being quoted at 279.4 for buying and 282.3 for selling.

Euro currently stands at 302.5 for buying and 305.5 for selling while British Pound rate stands at 354 for buying, and 359 for selling.

UAE Dirham AED hovers at 76.3 whereas the Saudi Riyal saw slight increase, with new rates at 74.5.

Today’s currency exchange rates in Pakistan – March 2, 2024

Source: Forex Association of Pakistan. (last update 09:00 AM)
Currency Symbol Buying Selling
US Dollar USD 279.4 282.3
Euro EUR 302.5 305.5
UK Pound Sterling GBP 354 359
U.A.E Dirham AED 76.3 77
Saudi Riyal SAR 74.5 75.3
Australian Dollar AUD 181 183
Bahrain Dinar BHD 737.97 745.97
Canadian Dollar CAD 207 209.2
China Yuan CNY 38.82 39.22
Danish Krone DKK 40.23 40.63
Hong Kong Dollar HKD 35.7 36.05
Indian Rupee INR 3.37 3.48
Japanese Yen JPY 2.1 2.18
Kuwaiti Dinar KWD 901.62 910.62
Malaysian Ringgit MYR 58.49 59.09
New Zealand Dollar NZD 168.97 170.97
Norwegians Krone NOK 26.54 26.84
Omani Riyal OMR 725.68 733.68
Qatari Riyal QAR 76.74 77.44
Singapore Dollar SGD 27.13 27.43
Swedish Korona SEK 314.07 316.57
Swiss Franc CHF 314.07 316.57
Thai Bhat THB 7.74 7.89

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