The messenger logo

Govít claims new regulation wonít complicate entry into Schengen zone

By Tea Mariamidze
Wednesday, October 25
Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Georgia, Vakhtang Makharlishvili, stated that the new European Travel and Authorization System (ETIAS), approved by the Civil Liberties Committee of the European Parliament last week, will not complicate entry into Schengen zone for visa-free travelers.

Deputy Foreign Minister explained that the EITAS will make visa-free travel easier and reduce the probability of denying access to travelers at the border.

ďThe EU simply tries to strengthen its internal security and takes measures similar to what has been used in the United States for a long time,Ē Makharlishvili said.

Under the draft rules approved by Civil Liberties Committee on October 19, non-EU nationals who do not need a visa to enter the Schengen area will have to fill in an electronic form with their personal data (including name, date and place of birth, gender and nationality), travel document information (validity, country of issue), home address and contact information, and the European country of first intended entry.

The applicant will also need to inform authorities of any convictions for serious criminal offenses such as terrorism, trafficking, murder. The applicants should also inform about their stays in specific conflict zones and of any prior administrative decisions requiring them to leave a country for the last ten years.

The European Parliament web page informs that the travel authorization will cost 10 euros, although some travelers will be exempted from paying the fee (e.g. persons under 18 and over 60, family members of EU citizens and students and researchers travelling for academic purposes). The travel authorization will be valid for three years (or until the travel document expires).

The application will automatically be checked against all relevant databases, including the Schengen Information System, the Entry/Exit System as well as Europol and Interpol databases.

Moreover, the applicant may be requested to provide additional information, and in exceptional cases, be invited for an interview. In case of refusal to entry, the applicants will be informed of the reasons and of their rights.