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SKOPJE, June 17 (Itar-Tass) —— Macedonia has permitted twelve-month visa-free travels of Russian citizens for the first time ever, Macedonian Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski told Itar-Tass ahead of his Russian visit.
“We had been permitting six-month visa-free travels of Russian tourists for the past three years, and this year the period is extended to twelve months for the first time ever. This is another step towards promoting Russian tourist arrivals in the republic. Macedonia is the cradle of Slavic culture and written language. The tourist city Ohrid is the oldest center of Orthodoxy; it is not accidental the city is called the Balkan Jerusalem. It is the location of the oldest Slavic university where Saint Clement of Ohrid carried out his enlightening mission,” the premier said.
“Russia is an important investment partner of Macedonia, and we hope for comprehensive development of bilateral relations. Macedonians are interested in delivering quality wine to the Russian market and receiving Russian investment in the Macedonian energy sector, which would help pay off Moscow's clearing debt to Skopje from the initial construction of the gas grid in Macedonia by Stroitransgaz," he said.
“The Macedonian government will do its best to support foreign investors, including Russians,” Gruevski said.
“I am going on an official visit to Russia. I will visit Moscow, Vladimir, Nizhny Novgorod and St. Petersburg. This is a good opportunity to present the economic and investment potential of Macedonia to Russian businessmen. I think the upcoming meetings may spur on favorable developments in bilateral relations,” he said.