Dhaka: Bangladeshis will no longer be eligible to enter Schengen countries once the European Union reopens its borders by early July, as EU has not listed Bangladesh among the 54 countries eligible for Schengen visa.
The citizens of the 54 countries will benefit from the reopening of the EU external borders, according to https://www.schengenvisainfo.com/ that posted the information yesterday.
Schengen refers to the EU passport-free zone that covers most of the European countries, and allows a person to travel to any member of the Schengen area using a short-stay visa. There are no border controls within the Schengen Zone.
Only two South Asian countries – India and Bhutan – made the list. Besides, Bangladesh's neighbouring country Myanmar as well as Thailand and Vietnam from Southeast Asia also made the cut as countries eligible for Schengen visa.
Reports said that EU officials failed to agree on a common list of the countries that would definitely be banned from entering the block upon the border reopening but managed to create a list of the countries with a better epidemiological situation, the citizens of which will be able to enter Europe by the end of next week.
Countries like Brazil, Qatar, the US and Russia will only be able to enter Europe at a later date when the epidemiological situation in these countries improves, the reports further stated.
Ahead of its official release later this week, which is expected to be implemented after July 1, EU officials said that the list will be updated according to the epidemiological situation and coronavirus response in each country, the ability to apply containment measures during travel, and whether or not that country has lifted travel restrictions towards the EU.
On June 11, the commission presented its recommendation on the reopening of internal Schengen borders on June 15, so that Europeans can travel within the borderless area freely, just as they did during the pre-pandemic times, according to Schengenvisainfo.com.
The commission also recommended that the member states should start allowing third-country nationals to enter the EU starting from July 1, gradually and partially, based on the epidemiological situation in each third-country.
Nationals of the following countries are listed in this draft list to be eligible for Schengen visas: Albania, Algeria, Andorra, Angola, Australia, Bahamas, Bhutan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Canada, China, Costa Rica, Cuba, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Dominica, Egypt, Ethiopia, Georgia, Guyana, India, Indonesia, Jamaica, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kosovo, Lebanon, Mauritius, Monaco, Mongolia, Montenegro, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Palau, Paraguay, Rwanda, Saint Lucia, Serbia, South Korea, Tajikistan, Thailand, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Uganda, Ukraine, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, Vatican City, Venezuela, Vietnam, Zambia.