Bulgaria to Simplify Entry Requirements for Schengen Visa Holders

Diplomacy | January 12, 2012, Thursday // 18:45|  views

Foreign Minister Nikolay Mladenov, photo by BGNES

Bulgaria's Foreign and Interior Ministries have discussed the opportunity for allowing Schengen visa holders to enter the country without additional travel documents.

According to Foreign Minister Nikolay Mladenov, this will be yet another step aimed at facilitating the entry of foreign nationals in Bulgaria, which will stimulate business and, most of all, tourism.

"Two weeks ago, Bulgarian embassies across the world were authorized to issue visas for periods of up to one year on the spot, which will substantially reduce reducing the issuance period for people wishing to come to Bulgaria to do business here. Apart from that, three weeks ago, the outsourcing of Bulgarian visa operations in the Persian Gulf was also activated. Countries from Kuwait to Saudi Arabia, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Oman have all been covered by visa centers operating in the same way as was launched in Russia one year ago. The simplified access to Bulgarian visas led to a 40% increase in the tourist flow from Russia," Mladenov explained.

In his words, the most important event that should take place in the next few weeks is the introduction of a regulation that is currently being coordinated with the Interior and will allow holders of Schengen visas to enter Bulgaria without applying for a Bulgarian visa.

According to the Foreign Minister, the measure will give a strong boost to key spheres like tourism and investments.

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Tags: Schengen, visa regime, tourism, investments, Foreign Minister, Nikolay Mladenov, Persian Gulf, Russia, embassies


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