The Finnish government will limit the number of visas issued to Russian tourists, mainly through differentiation of sanctions. This was stated by Finnish Foreign Minister Pekka Haavito to journalists.
N.B. Earlier, Turprom wrote about another similar problem: “Russian tourists have been dealt a blow: the country beloved by Russians on the warm sea has stopped issuing visas to them.”
Finland has weathered a torrent of criticism lately for opening its border doors to large numbers of Russians, even though the European Union has imposed tough sanctions on Russia. Despite the fact that, due to Russophobic sanctions, our fellow citizens are banned from entering the EU countries, a large number of Russians are trying to get to other EU countries using Finland as a transit.
According to Haavisto, last Thursday Finnish ministers approved an anti-Russian program that will limit the number of meetings available to Russian citizens at the diplomatic mission in Russia. This should lead to a reduction in the number of visas issued recently. “We are certainly not the only country that has problems with this issue. If we reduce the number of Schengen visas we issue, we should have a more coordinated EU approach,” the official explained.
According to a recent report published by the Finnish Border Guard, it became known that since Russia officially lifted anti-COVID restrictions at the common border point with Finland on July 15, traffic at border crossing points increased by a total of 38% – Russians rushed to Finland for shopping and opened a comfortable window to Europe.
In addition, in a recent press release issued by the same service, a total of 596 people crossed the border in just a week, although traffic volumes remain controlled. “Until now, there were no traffic jams at the border crossing points. The Kainuu Border Guard is prepared for a possible increase in traffic. In addition, the rapid recovery of cross-border traffic is currently affected by the congestion of visa issuance processes on both sides of the border,” the message noted.
According to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, during the period from 1 to 22 July, amid discussions that Finland should stop issuing visas to Russians, a total of 10,520 Schengen visas were nevertheless approved and issued to our compatriots. In this regard, representatives of the Foreign Ministry emphasized that the government's priority is to differentiate sanctions by imposing them only on the Russian authorities, but not on ordinary people traveling on tourist business. In addition, as noted by the Consulate of Finland, at the moment, more than 50,000 applications for a Schengen visa have been submitted to the Finnish representation in St. rights to tourist visas and stated that they would support the immediate termination of the issuance of relevant permits to cross the Finnish border – details here.
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