What is the “Bezviz”? It is the ability of Ukrainians to travel to the EU without a visa, and a source of pride for the current president, and one of the greatest of peremohas (victories) for Svidomites (nationally conscious Ukrainians)…
In my opinion, the Bezviz, which came into being in 2017, was never much of an achievement. It should be mentioned, that this was something the government of Yanukovych was already working on. Where once you needed a visa, a stamp in the passport, you now need these documents:
- A biometric passport
- Insurance covering the entire time of your stay
- Destination or itinerary
- In case you are not travelling by car, you will need return tickets
- If you are going for a business meeting, you need an invitation from the company
- If you are going to study, you need invitation from the school
- Hotel reservation, or invitation from friends with whom you are staying
- 20-50 Euros per day in the least, and proof of having this kind of money
- If you are going to work in Poland, you will need an invitation from employer, and 200-300 zloty.
Failure to provide any of these documents could result in rejection of entry. I still remember, in 1991 my parents used just Czechoslovak passports to travel with us to France. But 1991 was a different era I guess, Bezviz back then was not Bezviz now.
Anyway, the other day Stop Fake, a project of the Faculty of Journalism of the Kyiv Mohyla Academy, whose mission is to fight Russian disinformation, reported how the Russian media said the Bezviz will become more complicated.
The talk is about a new security system called ETIAS, which will start working in 2021, and will require an online registration and a fee of €7,-. Stop Fake came to the conclusion that this isn’t a complication, and that the Russian media are lying. But when one turns to CNN, as this new regulation will be obligatory not just for Ukrainians but for Americans as well, they are outright calling this new demand a “visa”. And it seems the EU does as well.
The European Union announced on Friday that American travelers will need a new type of visa — a European Travel Information and Authorization System or ETIAS — to visit the European Schengen Area.
And I have to ask, if this is a visa, is calling the regime Ukraine has with the EU a “Bezviz” still objective beyond 2021?
From Daily Mail:
The requirement to apply for a visa is said to be a retaliatory measure since the US still require some EU countries to apply for a visa.
The US had been in a disagreement with the European Parliament and European Commission, CNN reports, over visa requirements it has for citizens from five EU member nations: Bulgaria, Croatia, Poland, Romania and Cyprus.
The European Commission called for the US to reciprocate visa-free status to those five countries as it does for the other 23 EU nations part of the Schengen Area, the EU’s visa-free travel zone, in a 2016 report.