Ukrainian nationals look set to benefit from visa-free short-term travel to most member states of the European Union. The draft legislation regarding this regime has now been approved by the Committee of Permanent Representatives of the European Union.

The next step for the legislation to be passed is a matter of procedure, namely for it to be approved by the Council of the European Union and to then be signed by both the Council and the Presidents of the European Parliament.

Once the legislation is published in the EU Official Journal it will enter into force on the 20th day that follows, which is expected to be in June 2017.

Important to note:

  • Ukrainian nationals will need to have biometric passports in order to benefit from this regime.
  • This is for short-term travel, they will be able to enter the EU for 90 days in any 180 day period for tourism, visiting family or friends, and business.
  • The regime will not apply to the UK or Ireland.
  • The visa-fee travel does not confer a right to work or study in the EU.

Discussions on visa-free travel have been ongoing since 2008 but Ukrainian citizens look to soon be joining other countries allowed visa-free travel to the EU, such as citizens of Georgia who were granted visa-free travel on 28 March 2017.