EU Proposes Visa-Free Travel for Kosovo Citizens

AFP 2016/ ATTILA KISBENEDEK

BELGRADE — The European Commission proposes visa-free travel for people from Kosovo, Commissioner for Migration, Home Affairs and Citizenship Dimitris Avramopoulos said on Wednesday.

“Today we follow up on our commitment to propose visa-free travel to the EU for the people of Kosovo with biometric passports – facilitating people-to-people contacts and strengthening business, social and cultural ties between the EU and Kosovo…. I hope that the European Parliament and the Council will adopt our proposal very soon,” Avramopoulos added.

Kosovo has met all the requirements of its visa liberalization roadmap as the Commission confirmed in a report on Wednesday. As soon as the proposal has been adopted, Kosovo citizens who hold biometric passports will no longer require visas when traveling for short stays (up to 90 days) to EU member states except for Ireland and the United Kingdom, while the European Free Trade Association member states — Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland — will also not be participating in the program. EU citizens are already allowed to travel to Kosovo without visas.

In January 2012, visa liberalization talks with Kosovo were launched by the European Commission. In June 2012, the Commission prepared a roadmap for visa liberalization that identified legislation and institutional measures that Kosovo needed to implement in order for such a regime to be introduced.

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