April 7, 2022

Russia Implements Visa Restrictions for Certain Nationalities

Due to the current situation with Ukraine, the Russian President has signed a decree implementing measures to restrict certain individuals from entering the country. Visas will be restricted for several category of citizens from countries Russia considers “unfriendly”. Categories include journalists, diplomatic passport holders, members of official delegations and government officials. Countries currently listed as “unfriendly” include EU member states, Albania; Andorra; Australia; Canada; Iceland; Japan; Liechtenstein; Micronesia, Monaco; Montenegro; New Zealand; North Macedonia; Norway; San Marino; Singapore; South Korea; Switzerland; Taiwan; Ukraine; the United Kingdom and the United States.

Further to the above, Russian’s simplified visa issuance program with the EU, Norway, Switzerland, Liechtenstein and Iceland has been impacted with the suspension of certain specific provisions. The following changes have been made; the 5-year multi entry visa will no longer be available for foreign government and court representatives; one-, two-, and five-year multi entry visas will no longer be available for official delegations and journalists; individuals with diplomatic passports will not be permitted to entry Russia and/or transit through Russia without valid visas; government and court members will have to pay full consular fees whereas they were previously exempt, and finally, these categories of traveler will no longer benefit from expedited processing and visas will be issued under standard processing times.

The Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs has also been granted authority to issue personal entry restrictions on “foreign citizens and stateless people who commit unfriendly actions against Russia, its citizens or its legal entities.”

At present the restrictions are not applied to Business travelers and the decree does not largely impact foreign workers. However, as the situation between Russia and the Ukraine continues, further implications for immigration matters may occur.

For further information on immigration in Russia, please contact the Sterling Lexicon immigration team.

Leanne Cottrell

Leanne Cottrell

As Head of Immigration with Sterling Lexicon, Leanne leads a team of specialists who are responsible for ensuring the entire immigration process is smooth and stress-free for clients, assignees and their accompanying family members. She brings over ten years of experience in strategic immigration management, planning and consultation to her role, and has cultivated invaluable knowledge and experience in processing countless global migration applications. As a trusted partner, she consults with clients on everything from policy considerations and cost or efficiency improvements, to the impact of opening offices in new locations. Leanne is a frequent presenter and author on global immigration topics and trends.

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