D.Mandakh: Foreign citizens in Mongolia not interested in returning home

Translator E.Oyun-Erdene GoGo.mn

2020-05-20 09:45 GMT+8

Following interview is made with Senior officer of visa at Mongolia Immigration Agency D.Mandakh related to Covid-19 pandemic situation.

-How Mongolia Immigration Agency do work during this pandemic period? Is there any change on visa issuance? 
-Our organization is responsible for all issues related to residence visas and movement of foreigners within the scope of certain functions specified in the law. In accordance with the decision of the Government of Mongolia and the State Emergency Commission, we follow the same principles as other countries and regulate in accordance with the Law on the Legal Status of Foreign Citizens.

We are following common international principles. There is an international agreement on visa exemption. For example, South Korean citizens with short-term visas of up to 90 days are  granted free visas for potential period. 

Resident visa is extended according to requirements and short term visa is extended related to quarantine limitation period. Foreigners must extend their visa in case of registration and emergency assistance. 

-Foreigners except for South Korea extend their visa with payment?
-Yes, payment on visa extension is regulated according to the law. 

-Some foreigners returned by charter flights. How many foreign citizens are living in Mongolia currently? 
-Over 19000 foreigners from 121 countries have resident visa in Mongolia. 2933 of them are students and 437 have temporary visa. Foreigners are open to apply for charter flight to return. But 80-90% of passengers of charter flights are Mongolians which shows foreigners living in Mongolia are not interested in returning home. 

-How about visa extension of foreign students in Mongolia?
-Resident visa of foreign students in Mongolia expires in July. So relevant regulation will be made in July related to the quarantine situation. 

-Covid-19 impacts on every sector such as transportation and tourism. How does the change influence on Immigration Agency? 
-Covid-19 spread during low season of tourism. There are Chinese citizens who got stuck in China due to returning home during Tsagaan Sar. The labor force has also declined sharply in recent years. At present, diplomatic channels and international cargo cross the border without restrictions. International drivers transporting food from Europe are working normally.

We usually serve 80-100 people a day, and most of them receive visa services. Foreigners are more interested in coming in person than in e-services.

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