Problems to be solved
The State Secretary notes that much has been achieved in the sphere of ensuring equal rights but that enforcement is still lacking. “Rules governing free medical assistance for citizens registered permanently in each other’s territory are operational but legislation is needed for those staying temporarily,” explains Mr. Rapota.
“Our citizens already boast unrestricted, equal access to higher educational establishments in either of our two states. Around 20,000 Belarusian residents study in Russia while about 2,000 Russians study in Belarus. However, the entrance rules are different, so we’re working to harmonise this,” continues the State Secretary. He believes several such problems still require solution — including in the sphere of pension provision.
At present, the term of stay without registration for Belarusian citizens in Russia is being extended from 30 to 90 days. “The Union State gives advantages in receiving a residence permit and citizenship,” notes Mr. Rapota. “Ideally, we’ll have single citizenship — it’s something we aspire to.”