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Visa simplification stopped in the step from switching on

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has designated a new term for the beginning of the work of an electronic visa for entry to the Free Port of Vladivostok, this time 8 August

Visa simplification stopped in the step from switching on
On the first day of August, many Russian politicians related to the Far East emitted a serious visa optimism to the media space: since that date, an electronic 8-day visa officially started, which can be obtained right at the border, driving into the territory where it operates the free port mode of Vladivostok (SPV). You do not need to go to the consulate and pay something: it’s enough to submit an application on the website of the consular department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs four days before the visit. “The Far East of Russia includes electronic green light for friends and guests from 18 countries of the world, it’s almost 1 / 3 of the world's population, more than 2 billion people! This certainly increases interest, accessibility and mobility in visiting our country,” For example, Deputy Chairman of the State Duma Irina Yarovaya.

The Law on the Free Port of Vladivostok, adopted in 2015, assumed that the specifics of the entry of foreign citizens into the territory of the PWV would be spelled out in the changes that were to be introduced into the basic law No. XXUMX-FZ "On the procedure for leaving the Russian Federation and entering the Russian Federation." “Our goal is to launch a simplified visa entry regime from 114 July 1 on the first two checkpoints: at Vladivostok International Airport and at the Sea Passenger Terminal of Vladivostok,” said Alexander Galushka, Minister for Development of the Far East, at the beginning of 2016. However, at the beginning of 2016, he no longer recalled that at the stage of drafting the law on the Free Port, it was proposed to make the entry into the free port simply visa-free, and not simplified.

In order for the simplified visa regime to work by the second Eastern Economic Forum (whose participants, we note, since 2015, have been entitled to visa-free entry to Russia for the period of the event under a special presidential decree), the ministry has developed not only a draft amendment to federal laws, but and a draft government decree. The document proposed to introduce simplified visas by July 1, 2016 in Vladivostok, and then, by April 1, at the Pogranichny railway checkpoint, Pogranichny and Kraskino automobile checkpoints. By May 1, 2017, admission to Russia on an electronic visa was supposed to begin at the automobile checkpoints Markovo, Poltavka, Turiy Rog, railway Makhalino, Khasan, sea Vostochny, Zarubino, “Nakhodka”, “Olga”, “Plastun”, “Posiet”, “Slavyanka”. 

This draft government decree, however, was never destined to be adopted. The Cabinet of Ministers decided to take a different path - first to amend the legislation. The approval of amendments to federal laws, as it often happens, has been delayed. As a result, the simplified visa was not seen in 2016, since the legislation was amended only in March 2017 - then the Federal Law-28 was adopted, which amended the 114th law, Law No. 115-ФЗ "On the legal status of foreign citizens in the Russian Federation" and the law on the Free Port of Vladivostok itself. With an important nuance: the government was given the right to approve the procedure for issuing electronic visas by a separate decree, and the decree - a list of countries with which the simplified regime will operate.

The order was issued on April 14, 2017, quite surprisingly to all those interested. The fact that the document would give cause for surprise was probably also understood by Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, who at a meeting with the Deputy Prime Ministers commented on it as follows: “The list includes 18 states from different regions. For obvious reasons, it is based on the principle of reciprocity. states are closer or farther, namely, the principle of reciprocity operates: with those who are ready to apply to us with the same approach, we, accordingly, conclude bilateral agreements on visa-free travel. "

So, the "lucky ones" who can take advantage of the simplified regime to travel to FPV: Algeria, Bahrain, Brunei, India, Iran, Qatar, People's Republic of China, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Kuwait, Morocco, Mexico, United Arab Emirates, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Tunisia, Turkey, Japan. Everything.

The list makes a definite diagnosis of the current geopolitical situation. There is only one G10 country on the list. Or seven countries from the G21. Or two countries from 12 ASEAN states. Or just six out of 11 economies that are part of APEC. There is only one state in the list where Christianity is the prevailing religion. And XNUMX Muslim countries. Only seven countries belong to the sustainable understanding of the Asia-Pacific region. Moreover, XNUMX countries (most) are the Persian Gulf and northern Africa.

It can be argued that the regime of the Free Port of Vladivostok is not at all comprehensive. At the moment, it applies to 21 municipalities in five regions of the Far East. These are key ports in the south of Primorye, including Vladivostok and Knevichi airport, Vaninsky district in Khabarovsk Territory, Korsakov urban district and Uglegorsky district on Sakhalin, Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky and Pevek in Chukotka. At the end of June, the Ministry for the Development of the Russian Far East submitted to the government a bill to extend the regime to the international airports of Khabarovsk and Yelizovo in Kamchatka, as well as to the Soviet-Gavansky municipal district.

At the same time, a simplified visa may not reach some points of the Free Port at all. According to the new version of the implementation chronology, by August 1, 2017, electronic visas should begin to be applied at Knevichi airport and in the seaport of Vladivostok. By January 1, 2018 - at the railway points "Pogranichny", "Khasan", "Makhalino", automobile "Poltavka", "Turiy Rog", sea "Zarubino", "Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky", "Korsakov", "Posiet". They will start using simplified visas to the seaport of Nakhodka and through the Pogranichny and Kraskino automobile checkpoints no earlier than "completion of construction (reconstruction) work within the framework of the Federal Target Program" State Border of the Russian Federation (2012 - 2021) ". other paragraphs - "as equipped with appropriate software and hardware systems on the basis of decisions of the Government of the Russian
Federation ". 

Thus, the Ministry of Transport must provide the checkpoints listed above with the appropriate equipment so that they can interact with the unified system of migration and registration registration, as well as the production, execution and control of the circulation of identity documents (the Mir system). There, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs will enter information about the issued electronic visas, for which foreign citizens must apply to the website of the consular department of the ministry (we will return to it later). But the system will not work without the efforts of several more departments. The Ministry of Communications and Mass Media and the FSB must "carry out the development of departmental segments of the Mir system by August 1, 2017," the Ministry of Internal Affairs - by December 1, 2018.

This is also important: it turns out that before the end of this year and almost all the next in the police simply can not check through a single database, a foreign citizen has an electronic visa or not. 

In other respects, the accepted order presupposes in general a simple scheme. The foreigner sends an application for a visa with a photo through the Foreign Ministry website. The Ministry in case of making a positive decision on the application within two days unloads information about this in the "World" - in its departmental segment of the system. For two days, the information should be transferred to the departmental segment of the FSB, and from there to the checkpoints. To a foreigner, however, these subtleties are not important: on the Foreign Ministry's website, within two days there should be a visa refusal or within four days - a notice of its provision. As a downloadable PDF-file. It must be printed and presented to the carrier company and border guards along with the identity document. And also to have medical insurance and tickets or their reservation confirming departure from the Russian Federation within the subject of entry.

Everything seems to be very clear.

Next, the features of law enforcement begin, and the first of them did not wait for 1 August. 

Ministry of Foreign Affairs A specialized site launched, As announced, 1 August. But the submit button does not work. The inscription on it informs that it will start accepting applications from 8 August.

EastRussia promises to follow the topic.

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