Bulgaria will increase the cost of visas for Russian tourists from 35 to 80 euros according to a decision made at the EU level.
This was announced by the interim Minister of Tourism of Bulgaria, Ilin Dimitrov, Euractiv reports.
Dimitrov explained that the cost of the visa was 80 euros, but it was reduced to 35 euros for Russians, but not for long.
"This discount will disappear. It will not work to ban the entry of Russians, but the visa for them will become more expensive. This is an EU decision with which we do not completely agree, but as members of the union, we will have to comply with it," he added.
More than 60,000 Russians have visited Bulgaria since the start of the year, despite the lack of direct flights halted following Russia's February 24 invasion of Ukraine.
"There are Russians near the sea. There are about 100,000 Russian facilities on our Black Sea coast near the sea. They enter through Turkey, make serious expenses to come to Bulgaria, but still come," said Dimitrov.
Dimitrov also explained that about 20,000 Ukrainian refugees are currently housed in Bulgarian hotels, and by the end of October an attempt will be made to extend the government's housing program for housing Ukrainian refugees.
He stated that his main task is to pay hoteliers. They were initially paid from the state budget before all costs were reimbursed by EU funds.
We will remind, following the discussion on August 31, the EU foreign ministers decided to completely stop the agreement on the simplification of the visa regime with the Russian Federation and instructed the European Commission to think about what to do with millions of valid Russian visas.