Argentina to ease entry for some Chinese travelers

2 Aug 16



What is the change? Argentina has published a decree to allow Chinese nationals traveling for tourism to enter the country without a visa, provided they hold a valid visa to enter the United States or the Schengen Area. 

What does the change mean? Affected Chinese nationals traveling for tourism will be able to enter Argentina with an electronic travel authorization rather than a visa. This will make it easier, in some instances, to obtain short-term work permits because Chinese nationals will be able to enter Argentina and apply for a permit at the Immigration Department rather than through a consulate abroad.

Implementation time frame: Ongoing. The decree was published last week, but it will take some time for the Immigration Department to implement the policy in practice, in part because processes for obtaining an electronic travel authorization are not finalized.

  • Visas/permits affected: Tourist visas.
  • Who is affected: Chinese nationals traveling to Argentina for tourism who hold visas to enter the U.S. or Schengen Area.
  • Impact on processing times: The change will save affected Chinese nationals the time it takes to obtain a visa.
  • Business impact: The business impact is limited, and Chinese nationals traveling for business still must obtain business visas prior to traveling to Argentina. Some Chinese nationals will have an easier time obtaining a short-term work permit, however, as described above.

Background: The change came about as a result of Decree 892/2016, which was published last week. It applies to Chinese nationals who hold ordinary passports and a valid visa for the U.S. or Schengen Area. Those eligible for the visa waiver still must obtain an electronic travel authorization, which will cost $50 once an application process is established. Chinese nationals who do not have a valid visa for the U.S. or Schengen Area must still obtain a visa to travel to Argentina.

BAL Analysis: While the program will benefit certain Chinese nationals traveling to Argentina, it will not be available to business travelers or those who do not hold a valid visa for the U.S. or Schengen Area. It will, in some cases, make it easier for qualifying Chinese nationals to obtain short-term work permits.

This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group and our network provider located in Argentina. For additional information, please contact your BAL attorney.

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