China flags new visa-free travel agreement with Russia

Lazy eyes listen


Russian travelers may no longer need a visa to visit China, according to the country’s consular attache in Kazan, who spoke to TASS last weekend.

“We have already canceled visas for tourists in a group,” Chen Borui told the outlet on Saturday on the sidelines of the sixth Global Forum of Young Diplomats. He went on to say that a visa-free agreement between the two countries would “definitely happen in the future.”

However, the diplomat noted that in order to implement such a pact, a lot of security and migratory issues, particularly in Russia’s Far East, would need to be overcome first.

“It is necessary to resolve issues in these areas in order to control the situation,” Chen stated.

Russia and China renewed a reciprocal visa-free travel deal earlier this month, allowing organized tourist groups of five to 50 individuals to visit their respective nations without a visa. That agreement was struck in 2000, but it was halted in 2020 owing to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Moscow has also created a similar pact with Iran and has proposed a similar accord with India. Furthermore, on August 1, Russia launched a new program that allows foreign nationals from 55 countries to receive an electronic visa that is valid for 60 days and permits visitors to visit the country for up to 16 days.

According to a recent Federal Security Service (FSB) study, tourism in Russia experienced a considerable increase in the first six months of 2023, with the number of tourists increasing by 130% over the previous year, accounting for almost 187,000 persons.