Russia Simplifies Visas for Georgian Citizens

Russia’s Foreign Ministry (MFA) announced that from December 23rd a visa regime will be facilitated for Georgian citizens.

According to the Russian MFA’s statement, multiple entrance visas will be granted for business, working, educational or humanitarian reasons in Russia.

The Russian MFA also says Russia is committed to maintaining relations between citizens of the two countries, which may lead to the introduction of visa-free travel in the future.

The Georgian PM’s Special Envoy for Russia stated that simplification of the visa regime for Georgians is a step in the right direction. According to Zurab Abashidze, this will solve problems faced by many Georgians.

“It has been very hard to receive a Russian visa. The simplification will solve many problems for our citizens. Interests of our compatriots living in Russia, as well as Georgian businessmen and ordinary citizens also need be taken into account,” Abashidze declared.

The issue of visa facilitation for citizens of Georgia was raised last week, when Russian President Vladimir Putin stated, at his regular press conference, that the Russian side is ready to facilitate or waive visas for Georgian citizens. Putin added that Moscow has received signals from the current Georgian government.

Following Putin’s statement, Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili said the Russian President’s initiative was the right step. Garibashvili stated that the Georgian side is ready to continue its pragmatic course with Russia.

The initiative was assessed dissimilarly in Georgia. One part believes this is a positive decision by Russia, while others believe that this is another temptation for the Georgian government and that they should resist this.


23 December 2015 13:54