Russians with a valid Schengen visa issued for the purpose of tourism, sport or culture by any EU state will be denied entry to the Czech Republic from October 25, Foreign Minister Jan Lipavský announced after the government meeting, CT24 reports.
The cabinet also approved that between 2023 and 2025, the Czechia should give half a billion crowns ($16 million) every year for humanitarian, stabilization, reconstruction and economic aid to Ukraine.
Tourist visa ban for Russians
According to the ministry’s data, up to two hundred Russian citizens arrive in the Czech Republic via the international airport every day.
The Czechia thus joins the Baltic countries, Poland and Finland, which closed their borders to Russian tourists in previous weeks. The Czechia was the first EU member state to suspend the issuance of visas for citizens of Russia across the board, the day after the invasion of Ukraine, i.e. February 25. The ban is still in place, later the Czechia also imposed it on Belarusian citizens, in both cases with the exception of humanitarian cases.
For students from Ukraine or Belarus, the visa rules will be eased. The government also approved that Ukrainians will be able to apply for a residence permit in the Czech Republic for the purpose of studying, even if they have received temporary protection in another European Union country.
Economic aid to Ukraine
The program of economic aid to Ukraine, according to which the Czechia should give half a billion crowns every year between 2023 and 2025, was presented by the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Industry and Trade. The greater part of the program is a continuation of the assistance provided this year and follows on from the Czech Republic’s long-term stabilization and transformation activities in Ukraine. The rest should contribute to the involvement of Czech companies in the reconstruction of the country attacked by Russia.
The planned expenses were included in the budget of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Every year, 415 million crowns should go from the program to humanitarian, stabilization and reconstruction assistance to Ukraine.