Russia backs abolition of visas within APEC

Russia is willing to discuss the abolition of visa procedures with an overwhelming majority of the Asia-Pacific region countries, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said.

"The Republic of Korea has proposed discussing a draft agreement on abolishing visa regulations for short-term trips of our citizens. We are prepared for such negotiations with virtually any Asia-Pacific region country," Lavrov said at a press conference on Wednesday.

Mentioning measures the APEC members are taking to liberalize visa formalities, Lavrov said that a simplified border crossing procedure has been introduced for businessmen.

"We have also discussed an idea proposed by our Indonesian counterpart to agree on simplified procedures for delivering humanitarian aid and for personnel dealing with the aftermath [of emergencies]. I think this idea will be supported and we will come to such agreements within APEC," he said.

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