Asked whether restrictions imposed by Russia on “unfriendly nations” would affect Taiwan, Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokeswoman Joanne Ou (歐江安) yesterday said that the government would monitor the situation closely as Russia is still drafting the details.
Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs Sergey Lavrov on Monday said that Moscow is drafting regulations to ban the entry of people from countries on its “unfriendly” list.
The Russian government released a list of 48 countries and territories that have taken “unfriendly actions against Russia and its companies and citizens” on March 9.
The list includes Taiwan and other Asian countries such as Japan, South Korea and Singapore, as well as Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Switzerland, the UK, the US and EU countries, among others.
“The government is drafting an executive order to use visa policies as a vengeance on several foreign governments for their unfriendly actions. The order will put restrictions on their entries to Russia,” Lavrov said on TV.
The order might affect Taiwanese visiting Russia for business or study, Ou said.
There are about 180 Taiwanese in Russia, all of whom are keeping in touch with the representative office in Moscow, she said, adding that they have so far not reported any issues concerning their personal safety.
In August last year, Russia suspended visa applications from Taiwan and other countries to contain the COVID-19 pandemic, Ou said.
No visa denial cases had been reported to the ministry, she added.
Any impact on Taiwan should be limited, as Russia is not a major supplier of industrial materials to the nation, and Taiwan has diverse sources of petroleum and natural gas, Ou said.
Taiwanese can still leave Russia if they want to, as several international airlines continue to operate in Russia, she added.
The ministry said that people planning to travel to Russia should prepare sufficient rubles and US dollars before their trip to avoid being affected by Russia’s trade policies.
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