Kuwait has been negotiating with the European Union for more than four years to exempt its citizens from Schengen visas. Spain is one of Kuwait’s big supporters in these discussions, reports the specialist site SchengenVisaInfo on Wednesday 9 September.
According to the same source, the president of the Spanish Senate, Pilar Llop, said during her recent visit to Kuwait that she would support this option in the European Parliament.
Kuwait’s Deputy Foreign Minister Khaled al-Jarallah revealed last year that the country has held talks with European Union officials to exempt its citizens from entry visas to the countries of the ‘Schengen area. He also stressed in July 2019 that “there is progress that has been made in this regard”.
According to the deputy foreign minister, the agreement on a visa-free regime between Kuwait and the EU was also discussed last year with the EU’s high representative for politics. Foreign Affairs and Security, Federica Mogherini.
According to Schengen visa statistics, released in 2018, Schengen consulates located in Kuwait received 174,765 visa applications in that year. The report showed that 164,742 of these requests were answered positively, while only 4.9% of the requests were rejected.
The Schengen visa is one of the most powerful visas in the world, allowing its holder to travel to all 26 Schengen countries, 22 of which are part of the EU. A total of 62 countries around the world have achieved a visa-free regime with the EU and their citizens can travel to the zone visa-free. Only one Arab country is among them: the United Arab Emirates.