On 6 February 2012 a seminar “Russia: Intelligent Tourism” was organised in Brussels by the European Tour Operators Association with support of the Russian Permanent Mission to the EU.
Participants included Senior Officials of the Russia-EU Visa Dialogue Russian MFA Ambassador-at-Large Anwar Azimov and European Commission’s Director General for Home Affairs Stefano Manservisi, representatives of tourism, hotel, transport, museums and other segments of business from Germany, UK, Netherlands, Belgium, Spain, Russia and Ukraine.
Perspectives were discussed for visa waiver between Russia and EU, as well as EU visa policy issues and development of the Russian tourist sector.
The Senior Officials expressed positive approach towards a dynamic and effective implementation of the Russia-EU Common Steps towards visa free travel.
Ambassador Azimov highlighted a concrete objective – to have a Russia-EU visa waiver agreement concluded by the Olympic Games in Sochi in 2014.
The seminar proved that Russian and EU business communities are interested in developing human contacts and widening opportunities for tourist markets through further visa facilitation and abolition of visas for Russian and EU citizens.