New Zealand and Vietnam: Forging Stronger Ties Through Long-Term Visas

Forging Stronger Ties Through Long-Term Visas

In a significant step toward deepening diplomatic ties and cultural exchanges, New Zealand is exploring the possibility of introducing long-term visa programs for Vietnamese citizens. This initiative not only underscores New Zealand's commitment to fostering robust bilateral relations but also recognises the substantial contributions of the Vietnamese community, which numbers over 11,000 and is primarily based in major urban centres such as Auckland, Christchurch, and Wellington.

Building Bridges: A New Chapter in Cultural Exchange

Recent dialogues between New Zealand and Vietnamese authorities have spotlighted the mutual desire to enhance people-to-people interactions and cultural collaborations. The contemplation of long-term visas emerges against this backdrop, aiming to facilitate prolonged stays for Vietnamese nationals. This move is anticipated to spur educational exchanges, business partnerships, and knowledge transfer, enriching both nations culturally and economically.

Economic and Social Implications

The Vietnamese passport, ranked 138th on the Passport Index, currently limits visa-free travel options for its holders. By potentially introducing long-term visas, New Zealand opens doors for Vietnamese citizens to a wealth of travel and economic opportunities, contributing significantly to New Zealand's tourism sector and allowing Vietnamese nationals to engage more deeply in the local economy through business, investment, and employment.

To better understand the current travel constraints faced by Vietnamese citizens, the chart below illustrates the visa policies for Vietnamese passport holders as of March 2024:

Economic and Social Implications

New Zealand's Speaker, Gerry Brownlee, has lauded the Vietnamese community's positive impact, highlighting their role in enriching New Zealand's cultural landscape and economic fabric. This proposed visa program is a testament to the strategic vision of strengthening the ties between the two countries, fostering a more profound connection beyond mere visitor exchanges.

What are the policy and the future directions of this step?

While New Zealand currently offers visitor visas for up to 9 months, the specifics of the long-term visa program, including eligibility criteria and application processes, are still under consideration. This new category is expected to encompass a variety of purposes, such as work, study, and family reunification, offering a flexible framework for Vietnamese citizens looking to make more substantial contributions to New Zealand society.

A Forward-Looking Approach

As New Zealand and Vietnam enter this exciting phase of diplomatic engagement, the prospect of long-term visas represents more than policy change. It signifies a mutual recognition of the value of deeper cultural understanding and economic cooperation. With the potential to significantly impact both countries' social, cultural, and financial well-being, this initiative marks a new chapter in New Zealand-Vietnam relations.

In Conclusion

Considering long-term visas for Vietnamese nationals marks a pivotal moment in New Zealand's international relations and cultural exchange approach. By potentially easing travel constraints, New Zealand opens its doors to a wave of cultural and economic benefits and paves the way for a stronger, more interconnected future with Vietnam. As the specifics of this policy unfold, the anticipation and enthusiasm on both sides underscore the deep mutual respect and the promising prospects of this bilateral initiative.


Who will qualify for these long-term visas?

Details on eligibility are pending. The program accommodates various purposes, including work, study, and family reunification.

What are the anticipated benefits for Vietnamese citizens and New Zealand?

Vietnamese nationals will gain enhanced travel and economic opportunities, while New Zealand will benefit from cultural contributions and economic activities spurred by more extended stays.

How can those with an interest stay apprised of the visa program's progress?

Keep an eye on official announcements from New Zealand's immigration authorities and the Vietnamese embassy for updates on policy details and implementation timelines.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *