Increasingly isolated Russia scraps its Federal Tourism Agency

Increasingly isolated Russia scraps its Federal Tourism Agency
Increasingly isolated Russia scraps its Federal Tourism Agency
Avatar of Harry Johnson
Written by Harry Johnson

The termination of Russia’s Federal Agency for Tourism comes at a time of a near death for Russian Federation’s travel and tourism industry.

According to the presidential decree published today on Russian Federation’s official web portal of legal acts, Russian President Vladimir Putin disbanded Russia’s Federal Agency for Tourism and handed its tasks and responsibilities to the country’s Economic Development Ministry.

“I decree: 1. To abolish the Federal Agency for Tourism. 2. Transfer functions of the abolished Federal Agency for Tourism to the Ministry of Economic Development of the Russian Federation,” Putin wrote.

The decree signed by Putin came into force from the date of its signing – October 20.

The Federal Agency for Tourism (Rostourism) was a federal executive body of the Russian Federation, created by Presidential Decree No. 1453 of November 18, 2004. It was reporting to the country’s Ministry of Culture until late 2018 and was supervised by Russia’s Economic Development Ministry starting from the fall of 2018.

Putin’s decree stated that the decision to abolish Rostourism will improve public administration in the tourism sector, increase the efficiency of the development of this industry and optimize the structures of federal authorities.

The termination of Rostourism comes at a time of a near death for Russian Federation’s tourism industry, brought by severe Western sanctions levied on Moscow over its unprovoked brutal war of aggression against Ukraine, including the abrupt halting of all flights between Russia and most of Western countries.  

The death of Rostourism isn’t the first major change to the way Russians travel this year. In September, the European Union suspended its visa deal with Russia, and in the weeks since, a number of European countries have banned Russians from entering them on tourist visas.

“Over the past three years, due to pandemic restrictions, the absence of electronic visas, and now the impossibility of making payments using foreign bank cards and the absence of direct flights, the overall percentage of the drop in tourist flow to the Russian Federation averaged 95-97%,” Russian Union of Travel Industry reported.

According to Russia’s official web portal, in the coming days, members of Russian government must carry out all the necessary liquidation procedures and resolve financial, organizational and logistical issues related to the implementation of the presidential decree.

Subsequently a new deputy minister in charge of the tourism sector will be appointed within the Economic Development Ministry. Candidates for this post are still being discussed within the ministry.

The statement issued by the Economic Development Ministry said:

“The ministry has all the necessary powers to develop and implement socioeconomic development programs, issue licenses and accredit legal entities and individual entrepreneurs that will help intensify the development of the tourism sector. The decision adopted by the president of the Russian Federation will help enhance the efficiency of the Tourism and Hospitality Industry national project, which involves 17 federal agencies, all of the country’s regions and the business community.”

About the author

Avatar of Harry Johnson

Harry Johnson

Harry Johnson has been the assignment editor for eTurboNews for mroe than 20 years. He lives in Honolulu, Hawaii, and is originally from Europe. He enjoys writing and covering the news.

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