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07 February 2023, 18:20

Visa MRA hailed as another step towards closer integration between Belarus, Russia

Andrei Savinykh. An archive photo
Andrei Savinykh. An archive photo

MINSK, 7 February (BelTA) - The visa mutual recognition agreement is another step towards closer integration between Belarus and Russia, Chairman of the Standing Commission on International Affairs of the House of Representatives Andrei Savinykh told BelTA. According to him, the single visa space will have a positive impact on tourism.

"Mutual recognition of visas is a step in the right direction. The agreement regulates migration processes, makes it easier for foreign citizens to visit both countries on a visa issued by one of the parties. It also increases the tourist attractiveness of Belarus and Russia, creates new opportunities for the tourist business, enables foreign tourists to make cross-border tours," he said.

The MP also noted that the creation of the single visa space is a timely step. "It should rely on common principles, including security principles. We are acting in the same vein in other sectors. We are developing a single transport market, a single energy market, common welfare standards for citizens of Belarus and Russia, regardless of where they travel or where they live. We can apply this principle in the future and in relation to visas and foreign policy," Andrei Savinykh summed up.

A reminder, on 27 January Russian president Vladimir Putin signed the law on ratification of the Belarusian-Russian intergovernmental agreement on the mutual recognition of visas and on other issues related to the entry of foreign citizens and stateless persons into the territory of the Member States of the Union State. Thus, the Russian side has completed all the necessary ratification procedures on the agreement. The agreement was signed in Minsk on 19 June 2020. It was suggested by the Russian side. Belarus completed its ratification in December 2020. The purpose of the agreement is to create a legal framework for regulating the procedure for crossing the Belarusian-Russian border by foreign citizens and stateless persons. The agreement gives foreigners the right to enter, leave, stay, transit through the territory of Belarus and Russia on the basis of a visa issued by one of the two states and identity documents.

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