A total of 377,935 citizens from Lithuania, Poland, and Latvia have travelled to Belarus since the beginning of this year using the visa-waiver program, according to the figures from the State Border Committee of Belarus provided by BelTA.
The same revealed that the majority of those who travelled to Belarus were residents of Lithuania (228,688), followed by those from Latvia (112,897) and Poland (36,350).
Since the introduction of the visa-waiver program, about 762,921 people from Belarus’ neighbouring countries visited this territory, taking into account 476,951 citizens from Lithuania, 53,283 non-citizens as well as 174,627 citizens from Latvia and 58,060 from Poland.
Authorities in Belarus implemented visa-free entry for citizens of Lithuania and Latvia on April 15, 2022, and from July 1, 2022, for Polish citizens.
Citizens of Poland have the right to enter Belarus through border crossing points on the Belarusian-Polish border. Citizens of Lithuania and citizens (non-citizens) of Latvia are allowed to enter both through border crossing points on the Belarusian-Lithuanian and Belarusian-Latvian border. – State Border Committee of the Republic of Belarus
Those benefiting from Belarus’ visa-waiver program are eligible to enter this country without visas for an unlimited number of times during the period of validity until December 31, 2023. However, the number of days of stay in Belarus should not surpass 90 days in a calendar year.
The State Border Committee of the Republic of Belarus clarified that Polish citizens reaching Belarus are required to register at the place of actual temporary stay within ten days, while those from Lithuania and Latvia need to register within 30 days.
Those who benefit from the visa-waiver program are required to hold a valid document for travelling abroad, a green card when travelling by car and medical insurance.
However, those planning to transit through Belarus to third countries are obliged to hold a visa in order to do so.
In June this year, the State Border Committee of Belarus revealed that Belarus welcomed nearly 600,000 travellers from its neighbouring EU states since introducing this program.
The same source showed that the highest number of travellers visiting Belarus came from Lithuania (387,064), followed by those from Latvia and Poland.
Citing Belarus’ involvement in Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the European Union imposed several measures against Belarus, including the travel ban which impedes those listed from reaching or transiting through EU countries, the asset freezes used against the funds or economic resources from the listed persons, among others.