Residents of Qatar can now apply for visas to Ireland at a centrally-located Visa Application Centre launched in Doha by the Irish embassy in partnership with VFS Global, it has been announced. 
Applicants can visit the centre located at 301, Jaidah Square (third floor), Airport Road, to enrol their biometrics and submit visa applications in a modern and comfortable environment, according to a press statement.
The centre, operated by VFS Global in partnership with Mannai Trading Company, was formally inaugurated by Patrick Hennessy, Ireland’s ambassador to Qatar, on Tuesday. 
Qatar is the second country in the Gulf region, after Kuwait, where a professionally appointed VFS Global Visa Application Centre has been launched for “enhanced convenience to applicants”, the statement notes. 
Services at the centre had commenced on March 27.
With Ireland being a popular destination for tourism, business and higher education, travellers from Qatar “will benefit from customer-centric and streamlined services” offered at the centre. Centres for the governments of Australia and the UK, operated by VFS Global, are also located on the same premises. 
Speaking at the launch, Hennessy said: “I am delighted to welcome the opening of the Ireland Visa Application Centre in Doha. I believe the centre will be warmly welcomed and contribute to enhancing the ties between Ireland and Qatar. Taking advantage of this new facility, I expect a significant increase in the number of Qatar residents travelling to Ireland for business, education and tourism. With Qatar Airways due to begin a direct Doha-Dublin service in June, the timing could not be better.”
Vinay Malhotra, COO – Middle East & South Asia at VFS Global, said: “We are confident this centre for the government of Ireland in Doha will provide uncompromised service quality to travellers to Ireland. It serves the growing needs of outbound travellers from this region and, by enhancing the ease and convenience of the visa application process, will help promote travel from Qatar to Ireland.”
VFS Global has been operating visa processing services in Qatar since 2005, and today serves nine client governments in the country.
The key features of the centre include professional staff with local language capability to handle queries and applications, a dedicated website for easy access to information - including visa categories, requirements, check-list and applicable fees, secure handling of passports, documents and personal information, door-step delivery of passports, value added services such as SMS service, photocopying, photo-booth service and printing, and a Premium Lounge for personalised and comfortable service.
The business hours of the centre are from 9am to 5pm Sunday to Thursday. 
The submission timings are from 9am to 4pm, while document collection is from 4pm to 5pm.
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