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Visa-free travel to Russia for Seychelles passport holders

morganBy the end of this year Seychelles passport holders will no longer need to apply for a visa when travelling to Russia.

This follows the signing yesterday of a new short stay visa waiver agreement between the two countries.

Through this agreement, Seychellois are allowed to visit Russia for a stay of up to 30 days without a visa and this is expected to be operational by December 2015.

Members of the public will be informed in due course of the exact date the agreement will come into effect once internal procedures pertaining to both sides are completed.

The agreement was signed at the Maison Quéau de Quinssy at Mont Fleuri by the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Transport Joel Morgan and the Russian ambassador accredited to Seychelles, Vladimir Belous.

Mr Belous said this is a very important step as it provides the possibility for the citizens of Seychelles to legally cross Russian borders hopefully before New Year, and it will improve the relations between the two countries.

“Although Russian citizens already had the possibility to visit Seychelles without a visa, it was unfortunate that we could not guarantee that same privilege for Seychellois visiting Russia. But with this new agreement all this will change and by the end of this year Seychellois can visit and experience wonderful Russian winter,” he said.

He also pointed out that there has been a delay in the realization of this waiver agreement as certain matters had to be settled between the two countries’ respective ministries.

For his part, Minister Morgan said that this agreement represents a lot of very long hard work that has enabled them to come to this point.

“It is the reflection of not only the improved working relationship that continues to grow between our governments; it is a sign of confidence by the Russian government in the Seychellois people, but it is also a sign of our own personal working relationship and the furtherance of our common objective in the interest of our two respective countries,” he said.

He pointed out that Seychelles is at the top of the list for Africa in terms of having the desirability of having a Seychellois passport. We are now the 129th country that either does not require a visa or is granted a visa upon arrival or a visa waiver.

He also highlighted his objective as foreign minister to continue increasing the accessibility of our citizens to the outside world.

“It is important for Seychellois to be able to prospect outside into the world in order to be able to further our cultural, economic, commercial and also our tourism ties,” he said.

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