Foreign visitors traveling to Russia by train may soon be able to enter the country visa-free for up to three days in a measure aimed at opening up the notoriously bureaucratic nation to short-term tourists.
State newspaper Rossiiskaya Gazeta reported Tuesday that parliament is currently discussing legislation that would make the measure possible.
The proposed bill follows a similar law passed in 2009 that made it possible for visitors arriving by cruise ship or ferry to stay in Russia for up to three days without a visa. Industry analysts say the law resulted in a significant boost in tourism numbers to the northern port city of St. Petersburg, which lies near Finland and Estonia.
"Rostourism always supports any easing in visa regulations, as it directly encourages the development of incoming and internal tourism and brings revenue to our economy," tourism agency spokeswoman Irina Shchegolkova was quoted as saying by Rossiiskaya Gazeta.