MASCOW: According to Russian President Vladimir Putin, short-term visa-free entry for foreigners and electronic visas is the way to go for Russia if it wants to become a tourist haven. But Putin also said that it shouldn’t be done at the expense of ‘security’.
“We’re not going to achieve anything through bans in tourism or any other areas,” the Russian President said at the Business Russia forum in Moscow.
Tourists, who arrive on cruise ships to Saint Petersburg, are able to stay in the city for three days without a visa and “this practice must be generalized and expanded” throughout Russia, he said, especially singling out the Far East.
“We must also switch to a wider use of electronic visas. It’s obvious.” The Russian government is already working on this, but there’s some resistance from security agencies and the Foreign Ministry that Putin said he has to overcome.