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Monday, June 24, 2024

Russia – sanctions. Russians shop in Finland – avoid restrictions and drive through Norway

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Finland closed the border to Russians and does not issue them new visas. However, Russian tourists have found a way to circumvent the restrictions. They get to Finland via Norway and do some shopping. Consumers in Murmansk are waiting for western products that are difficult to obtain in Russia due to the aggression against Ukraine.

In the village of Naatamo in Lapland, there are two markets that usually make a living from cross-border trade with Norwegians. One of them after aggression on Ukraine decided that it no longer sells “duty-free” (tax free procedure) products to Russians. The other is still doing it, Finnish radio Yle reported.

Finland – Russians come shopping via Norway

As the head of the Finnish customs office in Tornio, Kari Hannu, said, the services cannot stop the movement of Russians whose visas are honored Norway and allows access to the Schengen area. It is up to the customs officers at the Norwegian-Russian border to check what goods are being exported, he explained.

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Yle said the foreign ministry said retailers should not allow the sale of products that are on the sanctions list.

– We do not have such goods in our assortment. We follow the rules that someone has put in place. Supervision is not ours. We issue a tax free receipt to anyone interested, and it’s up to the customs officers to judge, said one seller in Naatamo.

Among the products that are generally exported to Russia is currently prohibited, including goods considered luxury, the value of which exceeds 300 euros. There are many small shops in the vicinity of Murmansk that offer good quality western products (originating from Finland or Norway) – indicated in the report of the Finnish radio.

Main photo source: Shutterstock

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