Both Germany and France, together with the United States and Canada, are leading the economic sanctions against Russia due to the unprovoked invasion of Ukraine by Moscow.
In Seychelles, however, and under palm trees, German and French tourists can party with Russian visitors over a beer, a wine, or, of course, lots of Russian vodka
The sanctions against Russia by Western countries pushed Western hotels, restaurants, and other establishments out of Russia. Now the same companies make their money again in tourism hotspots such as the UAE, Thailand, and now also the small Indian Ocean island nation of Seychelles.
Former minister of tourism Alain St. Ange, who is now also VP of the World Tourism Network, said when he was in office.
This attitude made Seychelles an open and friendly jewel in the Indian Ocean and opened tourism to all nationalities and passport holders without the need for visas or other restrictions.
Louis Sylvestre Radegonde, the foreign minister of this island republic since 2020, must think the same.
He attended the second Russia-Africa Summit that took place on the 27th and 28th of July 2023 at the Expo Forum in St. Petersburg.
Today the fruits of this meeting are coming back to the Seychelles in Rubles.
Aeroflot, Russia’s national airline, will expand its daily frequency to the Seychelles in October, keeping this now often isolated Eastern European country among the top three markets for visitors to the island country.
Beginning October 16, Aeroflot will expand the number of weekly flights from two to three, connecting Moscow to the Seychelles.
Sherin Francis, the principal secretary for tourism of the Seychelles Tourism Board told the local media: “We are confident that by enhancing connectivity, we can significantly improve our market performance, as Russia holds strategic importance for our business.”
“Russia has also demonstrated the potential for increased tourism earnings, which would not only benefit our tourism sector but also contribute to improved market performance. We anticipate that increased frequency will be critical in achieving these goals,” Francis added.
This year, 25,546 Russian guests arrived in the Seychelles between January 1 and August 20. This marks a 39% increase over the same period the previous year.
In October 2022, Aeroflot restarted regular direct flights from Russia to Seychelles.