News ID: 275849
Published: 0542 GMT October 23, 2020

Iran, Russia cancel visa requirements for group tourist trips: Iranian Minister

Iran, Russia cancel visa requirements for group tourist trips: Iranian Minister

Iran and Russia have finalized an agreement to waive visa requirements for group tourist visits between the two countries.

According to Russia’s Sputnik news agency, the decision was finalized following a visit by an Iranian delegation to Moscow earlier this week.

The news agency also quoted Iranian tourism minister Ali Asqghar Mounessan as saying that visa-free travels would cover tourist visits for groups of 5 to 50.

There has been no official announcement either from Russia or Iran on when the trips would be able to start. Russian authorities had said earlier this month that a final decision on the issue was due as they expressed hope that an easing of the coronavirus situation in both Russia and Iran would allow the two sides to start implementing an agreement signed on the issue in March 2017.

Mounessan told the Sputnik that Iran and Russia have no plans to expand the visa waiver program to include personal trips.

However, the tourism minister said the implementation of the current agreement would lead to a huge boom in tourism relations between the two countries.

“Both Iran and Russia are viewed as two major tourism markets in the world .... But the bilateral share is not a significant figure,” the minister said in an interview given to the Sputnik in Tehran.

Iran has used tourism as a major source of earning hard currency at the time of increased American pressure on its crude sales.

Authorities say arrivals have decreased to 8.5 million this year from a 10-million peak seen in 2018.

Tehran has eased visa requirements for nationals of certain countries including China to further boost the arrivals.


Press TV contributed to this story.

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