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Taiwan could get Schengen visa-waiver by 2011: EU parliamentarian

Taiwan could get Schengen visa-waiver by 2011: EU parliamentarian

Taipei, May 28 (CNA) Taiwan's bid for Schengen visa exemption is expected to be discussed in the European Parliament in June and will be granted as soon as the end of the year, a European parliamentarian familiar with the matter said Friday.
"My understanding is that they will be coming up in a short time ... I would expect that to happen in a few weeks, probably in June, " said Simon Busuttil, spokesperson of the European People's Party on the Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs Committee, which is responsible for visa affairs.
The European People's Party is the largest group in the European Parliament.
The recommendation will have to go to the Council of Ministers after clearing the European Parliament to complete EU procedures before taking effect, he said.
"From past experience of visa liberalization for other countries, from the moment we get the recommendation till the moment we decide, you could be looking at around six months. If nothing goes wrong, this could be done by the end of the year, " the Maltese parliamentarian said.
Taiwan has been working on the proposal, which would grant Taiwanese travelers visa exemptions for 25 European countries under the Schengen Agreement, with the European Union (EU) since early last year.
It had said earlier that the proposal would be passed before June.
The delay was because a new European Commission entered into office in February and "there must've been a lot of backlog in the pipeline, " Busuttil said.
The delay was not related to Taiwan's execution of four death row inmates April 30, which sparked condemnation from the EU, the parliamentarian said.
Translation of the documents could also be behind the delay because all EU documents have to be available in 23 languages, said German parliamentarian Michael Gahler.
The visa-exemption recommendation will have a technical component and a political component, Busuttil said.
On the technical side, Taiwan has met all requirements, including security-related issues and biometric passports, he indicated.
"And we don't see any political obstacle in Taiwan's visa liberalization, " he said.
(By Chris Wang)




Updated : 2021-05-18 16:29 GMT+08:00