Australia’s High Commissioner to India, Harinder Sidhu, said, “It is a landmark achievement. This is the first time ever that we have reached the 150,000-mark in visitor visa approvals in India for a year.”
“One hundred fifty thousand visitor visas is a sign of the growth of the relations between our two countries. I welcome it as a positive milestone. The achievement underlines the fast expanding links between Australia and India.”“More and more Indians are travelling to Australia for business, tourism and to study in our universities, as well as visit family,” Ms Sidhu said.
At a function celebrating the 150 000th visa, the High Commissioner congratulated the visa recipient Mrinal Dutt and his wife, Kanika. Ms Sidhu presented a prize to them. They will get to climb the iconic Sydney Harbour Bridge and have received a boomerang to remind them of their Australian adventures.
There were a record 233,000 arrivals from India during 2015, a growth of 19%, which represents the highest growth in the past seven years. India’s ranking improved from eleventh to eighth largest inbound tourists destination for Australia.
By 2020, Indian tourist arrivals are expected to be around 300,000. Tourism Australia expects India to feature in the top five inbound markets for Australia by 2025.