On May 31, 2017 the Russian President signed a Decree on repeal of a number of foreign trade measures against Turkey (“Decree”). The Decree repeals the following prohibitions:

  1. Prohibition to provide certain services and the perform certain types of works by Turkish companies, or companies controlled by Turkish persons. Particularly, the prohibition applied to construction of buildings, engineering installations and specialized construction works; activities in the sphere of architecture, design and engineering; technical tests, research and analysis, activities of touristic agencies and other organizations providing services in the touristic sphere; hotel business and other places for temporary accommodation; provision of works and services for state and municipal needs; processing of wood.
  2. Prohibition for Russian legal entities to employ Turkish nationals.
  3. The Decree partially lifts travel ban for Turkish citizens and allows visits to Russia for members of aircraft crew teams, as well as civil servants and members of their families visiting Russia on short-term business trips under civil service passports or diplomatic passports.

Turkish citizens travelling with ordinary passports must obtain a Russian visa (i.e., except for diplomats and persons entering Russia under temporary live/work permits).

The Decree includes instructions for the Russian Government to introduce relevant amendments into respective implementing regulations, but does not establish any time lines for this task.

The Decree was issued a week after the meeting between Governments of Russia and Turkey when it was agreed to uplift mutual restrictions in foreign trade between these 2 countries (i.e., on May 22, 2017).

The Decree is silent regarding the remaining import ban on food products originating from Turkey, which has also been expected to be partially lifted after the above mentioned meeting between Russia and Turkey on May 22, 2017.

The text of Decree is available in the Russian language on the President’s web-site at: http://www.kremlin.ru/events/president/news/54640.