Meeting of Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs of Ukraine Andrii Olefirov with consular officials of diplomatic missions of the EU member states to Ukraine was held in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine.
The main attention was paid to practical aspects of issuance of Schengen visas to citizens of Ukraine. In particular, the Deputy Minister noted the positive dynamics of implementation by the European Side of the Agreement between Ukraine and the EU on the facilitation of the issuance of visas. Thus, the number of visa refusals decreased from 2.03% in 2012 to 1.9% - in 2013; compared with 2012, the total number of Schengen visas issued increased by 274 thousand in 2013 and reached 1.56 million visas; the proportion of multiple-entry visas exceeded percentage in the previous years and reached 39%.
The Sides exchanged views on the need for full implementation of the provisions of enhanced Agreement on the facilitation of the issuance of visas as well as spreading information among the citizens of Ukraine, who are covered by it, in order to increase the number of visas issued to representatives of civil society organisations, religious communities, members of the professions, journalists as well as to increase the proportion of multiple-entry visas valid for 5 years.
Andrii Olefirov informed consular officials of the European countries on the measures taken by the Government of Ukraine to complete the first phase of the EU-Ukraine Action Plan on Visa Liberalization and introduction for the citizens of Ukraine visa-free regime for short-term trips.