News archive - European Council Decides Visa Exemption for Citizens of the FYR of Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia

Visa exemption for the Schengen area will apply as of December 19, 2009 and include visitors travelling with a biometric passport for stays of up to 90 days within a six-month period.

Persons who do not hold a biometric passport and the residents of Kosovo (under UNSCR 1244/199) holding a Serbian passport issued by the Coordination Directorate in Belgrade will still need a visa. The same goes for the persons who intend to work during a short stay or who want to come for more than 90 days; they need visas and work permits.

EC Vice President: New Era of Cooperation

"By simplifying the mobility of the citizens of the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia, the EU will further foster the contacts between the Union and these countries and open a new era in our cooperation," said the Vice President of the European Commission, Jacques Barrot.

" Today's decision reflects the clear European perspective of the Western Balkan countries and is the result of the hard work of the countries concerned to meet the requirements for visa liberalisation," said Olli Rehn, the Commissioner for Enlargement.

Albania and Bosnia and Herzegovina, which are also covered by the visa dialogue, are not included in today's decision, as the latest assessment of the Commission showed that they did not yet meet all the requirements. A new evaluation will be made during the period of December 2009 to February 2010. As soon as the two countries achieve the necessary progress in implementing the roadmaps, the Commission will be ready to propose visa free travel for their citizens.

Source: RAPID Press Release as of November 20, 2009.

Geographical focus
  • Albania
  • Bosnia and Herzegovina
  • Croatia
  • Kosovo*
  • Montenegro
  • Republic of North Macedonia
  • Serbia
  • Western Balkans
Related organisations

Entry created by Katarina Rohsmann on November 30, 2009
Modified on November 30, 2009