GCC citizens exempted from Tunisia visas: president
Citizens from Gulf Cooperation Council states will no longer need a visa to enter Tunisia.
DUBAI - Citizens from Gulf Cooperation Council states will no longer need a visa to enter Tunisia, starting next month, Al-Hayat daily on Tuesday quoted the country's President Moncef Marzouki as saying.
"We have decided to lift the need for (entry) visas for all Gulf (nationals) starting from May in the hope of increasing visits and tourism" to Tunisia, Marzouki told the daily.
Tunisian tourism receipts plunged by one-third in 2011 after the uprising that overthrew president Zine El Abidine Ben Ali.
"Our tourism depended mainly on the West -- poor seasonal tourism linked to beaches only," Marzouki said. "Now since the Western (financial) crisis has hit all these social classes that used to visit Tunisia," the country is seeking to attract more Arab tourists.
Tunisia must not be "trapped in its relations" with countries north of the Mediterranean, said Marzouki who spoke to the daily during a visit he made to gas-rich Qatar.
Tourism is a key sector for the north African state, making up seven percent of its output and directly employing 400,000 people.