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CHOOSING AN AGENCY TO ACCOMPANY FOREIGN PARTNERS
Business activity in Russia is growing, and more and more foreign citizens are coming here to negotiate with partners and to attend industry events. For obvious reasons, accompanying foreigners is becoming an increasingly popular service – many agencies now offer airport pick-ups, transfers, hotel reservations, and the provision of guides and interpreters. A sensible solution to the problem, because the company, inviting a foreign guest, must ensure the comfort of his stay and maintain its image in the eyes of the foreigner. It is not productive to solve all technical questions by yourself, you should concentrate on solving work tasks and achieving business goals of the visit. This raises the question of engaging a specialized agency.
Traditionally, the role of support is assumed by event and travel agencies, as well as small firms that are engaged in receiving business or foreign tourists. However, to what extent can it be called truly professional and effective support? Is it able to minimize the main risks?
In deciding on the choice of a list of services escort business partner, it is worth thinking about the issue of his safety. Agency representatives will try their best to avoid this question, because they are completely helpless before the threat of a crime against a foreigner. Their resources allow you to be only “present” during the visit, the provision of security services is not in their competence. They are not able to calculate the situation and control it. As a rule, agents try to reassure the client. Officials also act in the same way, citing contradictory, but invariably reassuring information to the effect that there are no crimes against foreigners and that they do not need the services of a security company. So, the chairman of the Moscow Committee on Tourism and hotel business Sergey Shpilko calls the figure – 30 episodes per year in Moscow, his less courageous colleagues from St. Petersburg is already 140. Types of crime, as the numbers are called “ridiculous”, mainly pickpocketing. However, how, with such declared prosperity, Russia ranks in the world’s independent ratings as a very dangerous country to visit is not traditionally commented on.
Much is explained by foreign sources of information. For example, the US Consular Fact Sheet on the Russian Federation, which indicates the facts of kidnappings and murders of foreign businessmen and draws particular attention to the danger of illegal actions by representatives of the Russian authorities. A survey of foreigners shows that the police are no less a threat to them than criminals are to criminals. And official statistics indicate only that foreigners prefer not to contact the Russian authorities, considering this a dangerous matter, an ineffective solution to an issue, and a waste of time.
The low statistics of foreign citizens contacting the police is a global practice. A business tourist who has a few days and a clear plan of stay, will not violate it because of theft or confrontation with “locals”, no matter what country he is in. And he has no opportunity to wait for the help of justice, because the lawsuits last for months. That is why, for example, in Thailand, where officials do not hide the objectivity of the situation, a special branch of the court opened in 2013 to deal quickly with cases involving foreign tourists.
Obviously, foreign businessmen are afraid of Russia. How sad the real crime statistics are is not so important in the context of building proper business relationships. Coming to a business meeting with a Russian partner, having confidential documents with him, a foreigner hopes that the host party will show respect for both the business and the issue of hospitality. And if the Russian partner lives in such a “scary country,” he will declare his intention to provide the guest with full security. And he will also demonstrate this by including in the required list of measures the services of private companies providing a full range of security services.
Complete security is not only the protection of the guest, but also a strategy to prevent all possible threats, ensuring information security of the visit. This can only be done by specialized companies, which are not usually engaged in receiving foreigners. An exception is the industry leader, ITI Group. The security holding provides both security company services and escort services for foreign business tourists.
The range of services includes proper preparation of an invitation for a foreigner to obtain a business (commercial) visa to the Russian Federation, customs clearance at airports, passport and sanitary control, transfer, hotel reservation and, if required, information services for legal entities.
The work of ITI Group in this direction is based on the analysis of the criminal situation in the place of stay of a foreign guest, forming a report and a strategy of prevention of possible illegal actions. The businessman is accompanied by security guards, each of whom speaks fluent English, because in the case of a threat there is no possibility to use the services of an interpreter. Round-the-clock communication with the security guards is maintained by the Rapid Response Service (RRS), an armed group which is ready to arrive at a specified location at the earliest possible moment.
The ITI group of companies is able to solve any problem, whether it is a threat of confidential information theft, unlawful actions of officials, police or criminals. For many serious players of the market the contact with the ITI Group of Companies will be the optimal solution for escorting a foreign guest, minimizing all possible risks and demonstrating control over any situation.
Summary of the choice of agency for accompanying foreign partners:
- Foreigners consider Russia to be a dangerous country and unprotected by its realities;
- a foreign partner needs not only a car, a hotel room, and an interpreter, but also private security services;
- security is a whole complex of measures, including not only the services of a security company, but also round-the-clock information and legal support.