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Tourism Ministers to Meet on Easing Global Visa Barriers


London, UK – Tourism ministers from around the world will meet in London November 6 to discuss easing the process of applying for travel visas on a global basis.

The conference will be a follow-on to the G20’s recent declaration that international travel was a significant contributor to development and economic growth and the world needed to work together to make it easier for tourists and business travelers to reach their destinations.

“Important steps have been taken over the past few years to facilitate travel, but millions of people continue to face unnecessary barriers such as overly complicated and expensive visa processes,” said Taleb Riafi, Secretary-General of the United Nations World Trade Organization (UNWTO).

Trade show organizers in the U.S. have been urging a streamlining of the U.S. visa process for years in order to bring more overseas attendees and exhibitors to their events. Exhibitions have been touted as an effective way to boost U.S. imports; however, a sometimes complex and time-consuming visa process has effectively blocked untold numbers of customers from reaching the show floor.

The issue of visas and other restrictions will be discussed by a panel of ministers and representatives of the business community at the annual UNWTO & World Travel Market Ministers’ Summit, an event organized by Reed Travel Exhibitions. The November 5-8 event will be held at ExCel London.

Fiona Jeffery, chairman of Reed Travel Exhibitions, said the summit has been a productive forum for officials from the private sector and government to meet face-to-face and exchange ideas. “This year will be no different with leaders from both tourism ministries and industry debating the key issues and plotting a path for the future,” she said.

Reach Fiona Jeffery at + 44 (0) 208 271 2160 or

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