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The Government of India and other SAARC countries leaders launched The SAARC Visa Exemption Scheme in 1992. The SAARC (The South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation) countries met at the Fourth Summit in Islamabad on 29 to 31 December in 1988 has realized the importance of people to people contacts and established this special travel document. However, the people of SAARC countries have decided to categorize the dignitaries and that should be entitled to a special travel permit or document, which would be offered to SAARC Businessmen within their region.

As directed by the Summit, the Council of Ministers continuously kept under review the list of this category. However, currently, the list contains 24 categories of high persons, which adds Dignitaries, Judges of higher counts, Senior Official, Businessmen, Sportsmen, Journalists, and Parliamentarians, etc. who come under this category and falls under the SAARC countries. The SAARC Visa Stickers are granted by the respective Member States. The validity of this visa generally for one year, in case you are implementing this visa regularly, then you will be reviewed by the Immigration Authorities of SAARC Member States.

Citizens of SAARC Countries

Citizens of SAARC countries are categorized as Group A that contains the high-level people who serve the Government or runs the government—

Group A

Dignitaries, Government Officials (members of SAARC meetings and officials of SAARC Secretariat and its Regional Centers) who are visiting SAARC countries for a meeting under the ‘SSARC Visa Exemption Scheme’, however, this needs Police verification as well.

Group B

Citizens of SAARC Countries who are categorized under Group B are—General or Public categories that contain Journalists, Businessmen, Sportsmen, etc who are coming to SAARC countries under the ‘Visa Liberalization Scheme’, which also needs Police Verification and that must be exempted from the requirement of Visa.

For Afghanistan Nationals

If people are coming from Afghanistan, then they will be granted Temporary Residential Permit at the Immigration Check post. However, they need to register themselves within 14 days with the concerned Foreigners Regional Registration Officer (FRRO)/ Foreigners Registration Officer (FRO) of their place where they reside.

For Foreigners

Foreigners who are coming from other than SAARC countries are advised to enter India only after an immigration stamp with the correct date which is mentioned on their passport by the Immigration Officer.

In case, if the foreigners carrying a valid Person of Indian Origin (PIO) Card Overseas Citizen of India (OCI) Card with their valid passport is permitted to enter India without containing Indian visa separately. However, it is compulsory for overseas people to carry their OCI cards and passport so that the authority can put a ‘U’ visa sticker when you are traveling.

Grant of Business Card to Businessmen to SAARC countries

The Government of India or the immigration department of India provide Business Card to businessmen who are from SAARC countries, the card comes with multiple entries for three years and more. The validity of the Indian Business Card will be co-terminus with the validity of the Indian Business Visa.

The India Business Card will help in facilitation at the immigration counters for expeditious immigration clearance. The businessman will issue an India Business Card, but he or she needs to carry the passport containing the Business Visa sticker for entry into India. On the issue of a fresh Business Visa, a fresh India Business Card will be issued. While submitting the application for a fresh Business Visa, the individual will have to surrender the India Business Card which is already issued to the SAARC businessmen.

SAARC Visa Extension

In case the SAARC businessmen who are coming to India must have a valid passport so that the authority of immigration can grant SAARC Visa or business visa for 5 years. However, the applicant can apply for the extension for a period of five years while staying or coming to India for business or company activities or sales. This visa comes with multiple entries, however, there is a condition; the businessmen or company should earn up to 1 crore per annum.

However, in other categories, the visa extension shall be the subject of submitting documents, proofs, or business and services. In this situation, a business visa extension may be granted by the Foreigners Regional Registration Officer (FRRO)/ Foreigners Registration Officer (FRO) concerned on a year to year basis. And, the period of extension shall not be more than five years from the date of visa issuance.

Other conditions on Business Visa (SAARC visa)

SAARC (The South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation) Visa provided to Businessmen by the authority of immigration or the Government of India shall be non-convertible to any other visa form except in rare cases. However, in case you need to know regarding the conversion of Business Visa or Card to other categories, then you are requested to see the general policy guidelines of an Indian visa on this website.

However, all the business visa holders of Chinese nationals are requested to register themselves with the Foreigners Regional Registration Officer (FRRO)/ Foreigners Registration Officer (FRO) concerned in case your stay in India is solely on Business purpose.

Public Service Commission of SAARC Member States

SAARC Member States Address
Afghanistan el: +93-20 210 3966
Bangladesh Bangladesh Public Service Commission
Old Airport Building, Tejgaon, Dhaka-1215
Tel: +88-02-9117265
Fax: +88-02-8158495
Bhutan Policy and Planning, Royal Civil Service Commission
P.O.Box: 163
Tel: +975-02-324559
Fax: +975-02-323086
India UPSC, 1st Floor, Dholpur House,
Shahjahan Road, New Delhi-110069
Tel: +91-11-23381440
Maldives Civil Service Commission
Tel: +960-3307363, Fax: +960-3303648
Nepal Public Service Commission, Central Office
Contact: +977-1-4771355
Pakistan FPSC, Aga Khan Road, Sector: F-5/1. Islamabad
Tel: +92-51-9212297
Fax: +92-51-9213386
Sri Lanka Public Service Commission
No. 177, Nawala Road, Narahenpita
Colombo 05, Sri Lanka
Tel: +94-11-2136602,  Fax: +94-11-2369302

SAARC CCI Membership categories

Here are the categories with complete information so that you can easily apply for membership in SAARC as per your need or requirements.

Corporate Members

SAARC offers you the memberships to corporate who have a minimum turnover of 50 million USD per annum, in case, the country is already developed. However, in case the country is underdeveloped, then the corporate applicant must have a minimum turnover of 5 million USD. The application must be present in any of the SAARC countries or members who will attend both CI and GA meetings as an observer.

Petron Members

In this category the membership is offer to those corporate or individuals who have specialized in any specific field or fraternity that can benefit the region or improve the life of SAARC countries.

Life Members

In this category, the membership is open to that business person both male and female who is above 25 years of age and who can serve as per the criteria mentioned below—

  • The applicant must be a genuine businessman or woman.
  • He or she shall have a bank account on his or her company name.
  • The applicant must have a proprietorship or partnership or company registration proof from the authorities of their respective countries.
  • The applicant should also have a valid affiliation with any association or certificate of membership from his or her country.

Membership Documents Requirements

Sr. No. Requirements
1 The country who wants to get membership of SAARC to Secretary or President General National Federation of Chamber of Commerce and Industry
2 Individual Profile
3 Company Profile
4 4 Copies of photograph and valid passport
5 Proof of tax returns
6 Certificate of proprietorship/partnership or company registration from the authority of respective country
7 Demand Draft in favor to SAARC (Chamber of Commerce and Industry
8 If you are desire to become a member of SAARC, then you need to submit your Membership application to Secretary General of your National Federation of Chamber of Commerce and Industry with CC to SAARC CCI at including the documents which are mentioned above so that you can get the membership license from SAARC CCI. Once your application is accepted, you will then get the final approval of membership by the EC Meeting of SAARC CCI, which held after 3 months.

Criteria to fulfill to become SAARC member

  • You must be the leading taxpayers of your country.
  • You should offer your proof of the tax returns if you are a member of any Trade/ Industry or association.
  • And your minimum turnover must be the same as mentioned in the below membership fee list—

Membership Fee

1 Institutional Members: US $ 10,000.00
2 Corporate Members: (a) US $ 10,000.00 Per Annum For Developed Countries
(b) US $ 5,000.00 Per Annum For Non Developed Countries
3 Parton Member: US $ 8,000.00 For Five Years Only
4 Life Members: (a) US $ 5,000.00 For Males
(b) US $ 3,000.00 For Females

Note: Duration of Visa or the number of entries in India is purely the discretion of the Indian Embassy, or Consulate has no role in order to make any approach or process. The applicant has to observe and realize that Visa will not be a subject of right, and, hence the Embassy / Consulates might deny the visa if no longer observed the eligibility / or does no longer have adequate supporting documentation. If the process is not matching according to the demand from the authority will not grant a SAARC visa if you request more days or time in India. So, provide your details and information before you submit your application, and must pay your application process amount. There will be no clarifications on this regard, and the resolution or decision of the Embassy / Consulate will probably be final.

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