March 13, 2017 – Fort Russ News –
– Ostexpert.de, translated from German by Tom Winter –
Visa requirement (restrictions) between South Africa and Russia have ended
After March 30th, 2017, citizens of Russia and South Africa can travel to the two countries without a visa. This is reported by National Geographic Russia with a reference to a Facebook message from the Russian embassy in South Africa.
So far the trip for Russians has been associated with numerous hurdles. Tourists not only had to show financial resources sufficient for their stay, they were also required to provide an English-language summary of their itinerary.
Rapprochement between Moscow and Cape Town
As of 30 March 2017, a valid passport is sufficient to travel to South Africa. The negotiations between the two countries have been ongoing since 2016. The measure is a further step in the economic and political convergence between Moscow and Cape Town.
In 2016, South Africa’s Minister for Foreign Affairs, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, raised the matter of visa facilitation. “Russia is part of the BRICS,” she said. The Ministry of Interior had already introduced a ten-year visa for Russian businessmen in 2015. “We should also encourage Russian tourists,” Nkoana-Mashabane said.
Russian South Africa Tourism
According to the South African Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the number of Russian tourists has risen in recent years. In 2015, 15,000 Russian tourists flew to South Africa. The following year, the number had risen by 14.8 per cent. In total, Russians had left some 39.3 billion Rand (about 2.9 billion euro, ECB price on March 8, 17) in 2016.