Visa regime with Russia to cause more problems than benefits – Poroshenko's rep in Rada
The introduction of a visa regime with the Russian Federation will cost Ukraine about UAH 1.5-2 billion, which is not practicable for today, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko's representative in Ukraine's parliament and member of the Petro Poroshenko Bloc (PPB) faction Iryna Lutsenko has said.
"This will cause more problems than benefits ... I do not understand why we need to do this today. Ukraine has many challenges and needs to spend this money," Lutsenko said on 112.Ukraine TV channel on Thursday.
"If we say that we are introducing a visa regime, we need at least UAH 1.5-2 billion - this is a preliminary calculation - to create different consulates of institutions. If we create new border control in the "grey zone" … Does this mean that we are stretching the border into Ukraine?" she said.
The MP explained that such a measure would not force the Russian Federation to stop the aggression against Ukraine. The introduction of visas for Russians would not completely prevent the penetration of saboteurs from Russia into Ukraine due to 400 kilometers of uncontrolled border with Russia.
In addition, Lutsenko said that the introduction of a visa regime with the Russian Federation might indicate that Ukraine agrees with the annexation of Crimea.
According to her, the introduction of visas will restrict freedom of movement for residents of border regions, as well as the opportunities for Ukrainians to work in Russia. "And we can not provide them with work now," she said.
At the same time, the politician said: "There is no need for today [in the introduction of a visa regime with Russia]."