Karelia may become one of the visa-free regions for foreigners
According to the TASS agency, the Legislative Assembly of the Republic of Karelia made the suggestion to add the republic to the list of the Russian regions having the right to receive foreign tourists without a visa for 72 hours. The proposal was sent for consideration to the Government of the Russian Federation.
According to the authors of the project, the ability to receive foreigners without a visa will help to develop the tourism industry of the region and will encourage the development of the republic in the current economic and political conditions. In particular, the deputies expect that the simplification of the visa regime will attract more tourists from neighboring Finland.
The position of the Legislative Assembly was formulated by Catherine Biktimirova – the head of the Tourism Department of the Ministry of Culture of Karelia: “In the case of a visa-free regime introduction we can talk about the increase of the number of tourists by 20% and of foreigners traveling for shopping – by 50%”.
As the experts note, the tourist potential of Karelia is very high, and the possibilities of its infrastructure are far from being exhausted at the moment. According to the head of the region Alexander Khudilainen, the hotel infrastructure of the republic can simultaneously accommodate more than ten thousand tourists. Now the branch is actively preparing for an influx of visitors coming during the New Year holidays. The official asserts that not only Finns but also citizens of other European countries for which it is now economically advantageous to rest in Russia, are expected to arrive on the New Year.