BEIJING, October 31. /TASS/. Moscow may further ease visa restrictions for Chinese tourists in the near future, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said during an online conference involving Chinese internet users. He pointed out that Chinese citizens were eligible to visit Russia without a visa if they traveled with a tourist group of at least five people for a period of up to two weeks.
"We are mulling over the possibility to further ease visa restrictions," Medvedev said. "At the moment, the Russian government is considering a document which stipulates that the minimum number of tourists in a group will be reduced to three, while the possible period of stay will be extended to three weeks. We still continue the search for the most appropriate ways of cooperation in this field," he added.
At the same time, the Russian prime minister stressed that only Chinese tourists could take advantage of that option.
Medvedev noted that in the past years, the Chinese tourist inflow to Russia had significantly grown. In 2016, as many as 1.2 mln Chinese citizens visited Russia, while in the first six months of 2017, the number has increased by 20%. The prime minister also said that in Russia’s Far East e-visas were available for those visiting the country for no more than eight days.
One of the internet users asked Medvedev to share his impressions from Beijing and China in general. The Russian prime minister said that China "continues to surprise me in the positive sense of the word, particularly by its fast large-scale development in all the fields."
"No matter where I go - the Chinese capital or the country’s provinces - I see rich historical connotations and modern mega-cities, and in all of those places I feel inspired by the pace of development, growing transport systems, newly constructed buildings and infrastructure. It cannot but inspire," Medvedev said adding that the Chinese people had the full right to take pride in their achievements. In the Russian prime minister’s view, the changes that China has been going through are important "but you have also managed to preserve your best traditions."