New EU visa rules out­lined

On­line ap­pli­ca­tion process will cost €7

Costa Blanca News (North Edition) - - FRONT PAGE - By Dave Jones djones@cb­

The Euro­pean Coun­cil has set out the visa pro­ce­dure which out­siders trav­el­ling to EU coun­tries will have to fol­low when the new sys­tem is up and run­ning, ‘prob­a­bly in 2021’.

THE EURO­PEAN Coun­cil (EC) has set out the visa pro­ce­dure which out­siders trav­el­ling to EU coun­tries will have to fol­low when the new sys­tem is up and run­ning, ‘prob­a­bly in 2021’.

A press re­lease from the EC notes that it will ap­ply to ‘visaex­empt third coun­try na­tion­als’ trav­el­ling to the Schen­gen area.

The sta­tus that UK res­i­dents will hold post-Brexit has still not been for­mally agreed dur­ing the exit ne­go­ti­a­tions.

The EC stated that vis­i­tors ‘will need to ob­tain a travel au­tho­ri­sa­tion be­fore their trip, via an on­line ap­pli­ca­tion’.

“For each ap­pli­ca­tion, the ap­pli­cant will be re­quired to pay a travel au­tho­ri­sa­tion fee of €7,” notes the press re­lease.

“The in­for­ma­tion submitted in each ap­pli­ca­tion will be au­to­mat­i­cally pro­cessed against EU and rel­e­vant Interpol data­bases to de­ter­mine whether there are grounds to refuse a travel au­tho­ri­sa­tion. If no hits or el­e­ments re­quir­ing fur­ther analysis are iden­ti­fied, the travel au­tho­ri­sa­tion will be is­sued au­to­mat­i­cally and quickly. This is ex­pected to be the case for most ap­pli­ca­tions.”

Be­fore board­ing, air car­ri­ers and sea car­ri­ers will need to check whether third coun­try na­tion­als sub­ject to the travel au­tho­ri­sa­tion re­quire­ment are in pos­ses­sion of a valid travel au­tho­ri­sa­tion, adds the press re­lease. It notes that the EC adopted the reg­u­la­tion for the Euro­pean travel in­for­ma­tion and au­tho­ri­sa­tion sys­tem (ETIAS) last week.

Her­bert Kickl, min­is­ter of the in­te­rior of Aus­tria said: “ETIAS is an im­por­tant tool to re­in­force the con­trol of the EU's ex­ter­nal border and the pro­tec­tion of our cit­i­zens. It will al­low us to iden­tify those who may pose a se­cu­rity threat be­fore they reach the Euro­pean Union and deny them the au­tho­ri­sa­tion to travel.”

He noted that if there was an el­e­ment re­quir­ing analysis, the ap­pli­ca­tion would be han­dled man­u­ally by the com­pe­tent au­thor­i­ties. In this case, the ETIAS cen­tral unit will first check that the data recorded in the ap­pli­ca­tion file cor­re­sponds to the data trig­ger­ing a hit.

When it does or where doubts re­main, the ap­pli­ca­tion will be pro­cessed man­u­ally by the ETIAS na­tional unit of the re­spon­si­ble mem­ber state.

The press re­lease notes: “The is­su­ing or re­fusal of an ap­pli­ca­tion which has trig­gered a hit will take place no later than 96 hours af­ter the ap­pli­ca­tion is submitted or, if ad­di­tional in­for­ma­tion has been re­quested, 96 hours af­ter this in­for­ma­tion has been re­ceived.”

It adds: “The travel au­tho­ri­sa­tion will not pro­vide an auto- matic right of en­try or stay; it is the border guard who will take the fi­nal de­ci­sion.”

A travel au­tho­ri­sa­tion will be valid for three years or un­til the end of va­lid­ity of the travel doc­u­ment, which­ever comes first. The EC and the Par­lia­ment will now have to sign the adopted reg­u­la­tion and this will be pub­lished in the EU’s of- fi­cial jour­nal, which will en­ter into force 20 days later.

The press re­lease notes that the Euro­pean agency for the op­er­a­tional man­age­ment of largescale IT Sys­tems in the area of free­dom, se­cu­rity and jus­tice (eu-Lisa) ‘is ex­pected to start build­ing the new sys­tem, which should be op­er­a­tional by 2021’.

ETIASwill re­in­force the con­trol of the EU's ex­ter­nal border

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