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Visa facilitation agreements

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The European Union has concluded visa facilitation agreements with these countries (followed by date of signature / date of entry into force):

Russian Federation

25.05.2006 / 01.06.2007

Ukraine

18.06.2007, modified by a further VFA dated 20.06.2013 / 01.07.2013

Moldova

10.10.2007, modified by a further VFA dated 20.06.2013 / 01.07.2013

Serbia

18.09.2007 / 01.01.2008

Macedonia

18.09.2007 / 01.01.2008

Montenegro

18.09.2007 / 01.01.2008

Bosnia and Herzegovina

18.09.2007 / 01.01.2008

Albania

18.09.2007 / 01.01.2008

Georgia

17.06.2010 / 01.03.2011

Armenia

31.10.2013 / 01.01.2014

Cape Verde

24.10.2013 / 01.12.2014

Azerbaijan

30.04.2014 / 01.09.2014

The agreements which all have a similar content and structure apply to planned stays in the Schengen area of up to 90 days in any half‑year (short stays). They apply to nationals of these countries all around the world.

Visa liberalisation for nationals of Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia

On 19 December 2009, visa requirements for nationals from the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia were lifted for stays in the Schengen area of up to 90 days in any half‑year, insofar as they are holders of a biometric passport (c.f. Annex II, Part I of the EU Visa Regulation).

Visa requirements were also lifted for nationals of Albania as well as Bosnia and Herzegovina for stays in the Schengen area of up to 90 days in any half‑year with effect from 15 December 2010. This also only applies to holders of biometric passports. Nationals not in possession of a biometric passport still require a visa in which case the aforementioned visa facilitation agreements apply.

Nationals of Kosovo remain subject to visa requirements even if they have a Serbian passport.

Key points of the agreements

The main points are:

  • simplification of the documentary evidence regarding the purpose of the journey (Article 4 applying for example to official delegations, business people, lorry drivers, journalists, pupils and students as well as close relatives)
  • increased issuance of multiple‑entry visas to certain groups (applying to same groups as above)
  • visa processing fee fundamentally set at 35 euro (Article 6) with various exemptions from visa fees (for example for family visits)
  • processing time of 10 days after submission of application (Article 7)
  • abolition of visa requirements for holders of diplomatic passports (Article 10 or 11)

You can access the agreements using the links on the right.

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