Society & Lifestyle

EU Begins Work on Digital Visas for Schengen Visitors

Negotiations on the creation and subsequent implementation of a digital visa for the Schengen area will soon begin in the European Union.

EU Begins Work on Digital Visas for Schengen Visitors

Source: motionarray.com

The digital visa, if the decision on its implementation is made following the negotiations, will be available to those who transit through the Schengen area of Europe or stay for a short time in the countries that are part of it. Citizens will be able to apply for a digital version of the identity card and store this electronic document on their smartphone.

The digital visa has the form of a cryptographically signed 2D barcode. This visa format will replace the existing physical sticker issued to travelers from countries outside the EU whose citizens are required to obtain a Schengen visa. The European Council claims that this decision will significantly reduce the security risks associated with fake and stolen visa stickers.

Also, the proposed procedure for the introduction of a digital visa provides for the creation of a special platform for applying for this electronic document. This platform will be a single website from which applications will be sent to the relevant national visa systems.

On a single website, visa applicants will be able to enter all the data necessary for this procedure, upload electronic copies of their documents, and pay visa fees. Messages on the results of the consideration of applications will also be posted on this platform.

Personal appearance at the consulate is assumed only in cases when a person applies for a visa for the first time when he has a new travel document and when his biometric data has expired.

If a person intends to visit several countries of the Schengen area using a digital visa, the platform, based on information about the planned period of stay, will automatically determine which of the relevant services of the states will consider the application. At the same time, the applicant will have the opportunity to indicate whether his application should be considered by a specific country in accordance with the purpose of the trip.

Swedish Migration Minister Maria Malmer Steward says that the introduction of a digital visa will simplify the application procedure and make the Schengen area a safer space.

The proposal to introduce a digital visa for entry into the Schengen area was made by the EU Commission in April 2022. Now, this topic will be the subject of negotiations between the EU Council and the European Parliament.

The Schengen area includes Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, Switzerland, and all EU member states, with the exception of Bulgaria, Cyprus, Ireland, and Romania.

As we have reported earlier, European Union may fail to meet the digital targets of the decade.

Serhii Mikhailov

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Serhii’s track record of study and work spans six years at the Faculty of Philology and eight years in the media, during which he has developed a deep understanding of various aspects of the industry and honed his writing skills; his areas of expertise include fintech, payments, cryptocurrency, and financial services, and he is constantly keeping a close eye on the latest developments and innovations in these fields, as he believes that they will have a significant impact on the future direction of the economy as a whole.