Public Discussion 

EU-Russia Visa Dialogue: Building Bridges or Dams?

Tuesday, 1 December 2020, 4pm-5.30pm CET/ 6pm-7.30pm MSK, Zoom

23 years ago, on 1 December 1997, the first ever Partnership and Cooperation Agreement between the European Union and Russia entered into force. This agreement is aimed at setting a framework covering almost every aspect of cooperation between both parties, including human rights and democracy, education and training, trade and customs issues, etc. It also institutionalises a regular high-level political dialogue between the EU and Russia.

In 2007, the parties agreed on a simplified procedure of visa issuance to 11 categories of EU and Russian citizens. That was one of the last significant achievements in the EU-Russia visa liberalisation process. The dramatic events, which followed in 2014 and later, led to its expected slowing.

The recently published background note “Building Bridges: EU-Russia Visa Liberalisation and Visa Facilitation Dialogue” appears in the context of yet another backslide in the relations between the European Union and the Russian Federation. However, the authors and the EU-Russia Civil Society Forum consider it important that this topic be brought back onto the EU-Russia agenda.

  • Where do we stand in the EU-Russia visa facilitation/ liberalisation process now?
  • How did the COVID-19 affect the overall situation?
  • Are there any prospects for resuming the visa dialogue in the nearest future – and for which categories of citizens?

The authors of the background note will be seeking answers to these and other questions:

Olga Gulina (Berlin, Germany), RUSMPI UG — Institute on Migration Policy – Editor

Stefan Melle (Berlin, Germany), DRA (German-Russian Exchange)

Alexander Dubowy (Vienna, Austria), Centre for Eurasian Studies, University of Vienna

Welcome Words:

Pavel Havlíček (Prague, Czech Republic – Brussels, Belgium), AMO – Association for International Affairs, Board member of the EU-Russia Civil Society Forum

Barbara von Ow-Freytag (Berlin, Germany), Prague Civil Society Centre

The discussion will be held in English and Russian. Simultaneous interpretation provided.

We kindly ask you to register until 30 November 2020 at