The State Migration Service, an adjunct body of the Ministry of Territorial Administration and Development, reports an unprecedented increase in the number of Indian citizens crossing Armenia’s state border or seeking a permanent residence in the country.
In the first half of 2018 alone, 10,237 Indians crossed the interstate border as opposed to the 3,915 in 2015. Also in the same period, 9,122 Indian citizens left the country against the 3,899 in 2015, 41,148 in 2016 and 11,278 in 2016, a recently compiled statistics reveals.
As to those obtaining a permanent residence status, their number increased to an estimated 2,000 in the reporting period in comparison with the 1,119 in 2015.
The growth is largely attributed to the visa policies pursued by the Armenian authorities since 2017. Particularly, under a government decision adopted in February 2017, Indian citizens are allowed to obtain entry permits for Armenia only in foreign countries’ diplomatic representations and consulates (also without an invitations), while those residing the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Qatar, Kuwait and Oman may obtain visas at the border checkpoints upon arrival.
Later the same year, the Government passed another decision facilitating the entry procedures for Indians. Under the measure, dated November 2017, invitations are no longer a requirement for Indian citizens wishing to travel to Armenia; they can obtain visas either from embassies or at border checkpoints, as well as through electronic procedures (E-Visa).
The Armenian Government permanently takes steps towards improving visa issuance procedures and enhancing control over illegal migration with a strong focus on anti-discrimination policies (as the core underlying principle behind all the said actions).
Under the law of Republic of Armenia “On Foreign Citizens”, entry visas are issued for a period of 21 and 120 days (with a state duty of AMD 30,000 or approx $60), with a possibility of extension for a maximum period of 60 days (state duty: AMD 15,000 or approx. $60).