Ukraine expects a unified list of documents from the European Commission needed to grant Schengen visas to Ukrainian citizens, the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry has reported.
"The Ukrainian Foreign Ministry welcomes the positive dynamics in the implementation by the European side of the visa facilitation agreement between Ukraine and the EU and hopes the European Commission will adopt a unified list of documents that should be submitted by Ukrainian citizens to the consular offices of EU member states on Ukrainian territory for the registration of visas," Acting Director of the Foreign Ministry's Information Policy Department Yevhen Perebyinis said at a briefing on Wednesday. He said that the European Commission published official data on the registration of Schengen visas to Ukrainian citizens last year, "with the EU side noting the positive dynamics that has annually improved since the beginning of the application of the agreement." In particular, according to the European Commission, the number of visa denials to Ukrainian citizens shrank from 3.3% in 2011 to 2.03% in 2012. The total number of Schengen visas issued to Ukrainians grew by 173,000 in 2012 and reached 1.28 million visas. According to the commission, the number of multiple-entry visas exceeded the figures of previous years and reached 38.5% in 2012. The Foreign Ministry hopes for further control by the consulates of EU member states over the activity of visa intermediaries, as well as for the possibility of direct access for applicants to consular offices for visas. According to the diplomat, Kyiv expects the European side to complete all of the procedures necessary for the entry into force of amendments to the visa facilitation agreement. "In addition, the Foreign Ministry hopes the European side will decide on the transition to the fulfillment of the second phase of the action plan on the liberalization by the EU of the visa regime for Ukraine, as well as for the introduction for Ukrainian citizens of visa-free travel as soon as the necessary conditions are fulfilled," Perebyinis said.