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UKRAINE – European Council Adopts Schengen Visa Waiver for Ukrainian Nationals

On 11 May 2017, the European Council adopted a proposal on visa liberalisation for Ukrainian nationals, allowing Ukrainians to travel to the Schengen Area without obtaining visas.

Under the visa exemption, Ukrainians who hold a biometric passport will have the right to enter the EU visa-free for 90 days in any 180-day period, for business, tourist or family purposes, but not to work or study.

Next Steps

The Council and the European Parliament now need to sign the adopted regulation. The visa-free regime will then enter into force 20 days after publication, in the Official Journal, of the amendment to Regulation 539/2001 on visa requirements for nationals of non-EU member countries.

Background

The Schengen Area consists of 22 European Union Member States and four non-members: Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland. Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus and Romania are not yet part of the Schengen Area, but nonetheless have a visa policy that is based on the Schengen area.

The visa waiver does not apply to the United Kingdom and Ireland which have opted out of the Schengen area.

Action Items

  • Note that nationals of Ukraine will be allowed to travel to the Schengen Area for tourism or business for up to 90 days in any 180-day period without a visa, later this year.

This news alert was prepared using information provided by the European Council and the European Commission.

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DISCLAIMER: The information contained in this immigration alert has been abridged from laws, court decisions, and administrative rulings and should not be construed or relied upon as legal advice. If you have specific questions regarding the applicability of this information, please contact Peregrine © 2017 Peregrine Immigration Management Ltd.