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Prime Minister explores possibility of Schengen visa waiver for Belizeans

Posted: Tuesday, July 18, 2023. 9:20 am CST.

By Zoila Palma Gonzalez: On July 15, 2023, Prime Minister John Briceño departed the country to attend the European Union – Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (EU-CELAC) Summit 2023 in Brussels, Belgium.

The Prime Minister is seeking to work on the possibility of a Schengen visa waiver for Belizeans.

Presently, Belizeans planning to travel to Europe must travel to Mexico and apply for a Schengen visa.

Belize is seeking the support of the Member States of the European Union (EU) for Belize to be placed on the list of countries whose nationals do not require a Schengen visa.

The Government believes that Belize fully meets the EU’s criteria for a visa waiver based on the concern that nationals of Belize, including government officials, face undue burdensome and costly challenges to lodge a Schengen visa application, and to maximize economic relations with the EU, and especially the promised benefits under the CARIFORUM-EU Economic Partnership Agreement.

In addition, the Government believes that Belize meets the EU’s criteria for granting Schengen Visa Waiver.

The mission of Belize to the European Union also noted that traditionally, Visa waivers are granted on the basis of reciprocity and Belize does not require visas for any national of the European Union, which goes even beyond Schengen Member countries.

Following the summit, the Prime Minister will proceed on personal leave and will return to Belize on July 31, 2023.

 

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