12.03.2016. Schengen visas have become easier to get; however, the progress is due to some “friendly” countries, such as Hungary, Estonia and Lithuania, says Iryna Sushko, Europe without Barriers
On the 10th of March 2016 Europe without Barriers NGO presented public ranking of 18 EU countries, which are the most and least effective in implementing the Visa Facilitation Agreement between the European Community and Ukraine, as wells as the EU Visa Code. Consular practices of Schengen countries were characterized as “friendly”, “neutral” or “contradictory”. This was based on the survey of Ukrainian citizens on the following criteria: the fastest and slowest consideration of visa applications, issuing most / least amount of long-term and multiple-entry visas, fastest and slowest collection of biometric data, requirements of additional documents. According to the survey:
- “Friendly” consular practice: Estonia, Lithuania and Hungary
- “Neutral” consular practice: Austria, Belgium, Latvia, Slovakia and Sweden
- “Controversial” consular practice: Poland, Germany, Finland, Greece, Portugal, Spain, Netherlands, France, Italy, Czech Republic
The results of public monitoring of issuing visas to Schengen countries, conducted in autumn 2015, shows contradictory trends. “Although multiple and long-term Schengen visas have become easier to get, the progress is mainly due to some “friendly” countries to consular institutions, such as Hungary, Estonia and Lithuania,” said Iryna Sushko, Executive Director of Europe without Barriers.
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