[IMG=20059-5821]On June 8th a BANKO correspondent found out the consequences of the increase of visa issuing period by the French Consulate in Moscow. At the moment the Russian Union of Tourism is preparing letters for the Ministry of Tourism and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of France. ‘We do not expect that a budget for staff increase will be allocated soon. However, it is necessary to take action at the intergovernmental level’, explained representatives of Russian Union of Tourism.
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russian and Rostourism are less concerned about the French initiative. Thus, Andrey Krivtsov, General Director Deputy of the Information and Press Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, commented as follows: ‘every year all Embassies adopt certain changes – it’s the objective reality. According to previous experience, I believe that the situation will gradually stabilize and there will not be a drop in demand for France’.
Furthermore, Sergey Sinitsin, Press Secretary of Rostourism, said: ‘The French Embassy announced its intention to increase visa issuing period well in advance, therefore, it is wrong to call the situation crisis. Both tourists and travel companies can adapt to new rules and to apply for visa in advance. I believe, the initiative of the French Embassy will hardly affect the tourist flow to the destination. As far as I know a two-week period is reassuring – in fact it is planned to process applications in a shorter period’.
Tour operators, interviewed by a BANKO correspondent, do not intend to participate in any intergovernmental negotiations. According to them, it is more important at the moment to inform agencies and clients about the further changes.
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