The State of Belgium and VFS Global have opened a new visa service centre in Ahmedabad.
Karl Van den Bossche, consul general of Belgium in Mumbai inaugurated the new centre located at the Gujarat Chamber of Commerce and Industries building at Ashram Road.
This new initiative is in continuation to the decision of extending this service to six new locations across India. Speaking on the occasion, Bossche said, “These centres will offer a high quality and expedient service to our applicants. We strive to return passports within 3 working days. With this initiative, Belgium further intensifies its cultural and economic ties with India.”
He further stated, “In 2012 we received well over 5,000 visa applications from Gujarat. The ties between Belgium and Gujarat are particularly strong, mainly thanks to the diamond trade but also more and more other sectors. Moreover a few thousand Gujaratis have made Belgium and specifically Antwerp their home. Next steps in our focus on India are the opening of a Consulate General in Chennai and the visit of a large business delegation headed by HRH Prince Philippe, Crown Prince of Belgium, to New Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai on November 23-29. Also Belgium’s festival Europalia, one of Europe’s largest cultural events, will put India in the spotlights this year.”
In 2012, nearly 34,000 visa applications were received from travellers in Western and Southern India by the Belgian Consulate in Mumbai. This increase over the last few years in Belgium bound travellers has encouraged the new initiative for expansion in the regions.
Vishal Jairath, regional head for south asia at VFS Global said, “We are committed to provide professional and convenient services to all applicants applying for a Belgian visa in the region.”