January 29, 2017 / 2:06 PM / 4 years ago

UAE to grant Russian visitors visas on arrival

United Arab Emirates Prime Minister, Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum attends the Gulf Cooperation Council's (GCC) 37th Summit in Manama, Bahrain, December 6, 2016. REUTERS/Hamad I Mohammed

DUBAI (Reuters) - The United Arab Emirates will offer Russian visitors visas on arrival in the country in a bid to boost tourism and trade, state news agency WAM reported on Sunday.

Prime Minister and ruler of Dubai Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum has approved a cabinet decree recommending Russians be granted visas as soon as they arrive, WAM reported.

The report did not say when the change would come into effect.

The UAE, home to global tourism hub Dubai, is keen to bolster trade and tourism as visitor numbers from once core markets, including Russia, have declined due to economic slowdowns and a strong dollar. The UAE’s dirham is pegged to the dollar.

Last September, the UAE granted visas on arrival to holders of Chinese passports.

Over 600,000 Russian tourists have visited the UAE over the past two years, according to WAM.

Reporting by Alexander Cornwell; Editing by Susan Fenton

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