EU introduces Biometric Schengen Visas

biometricsAs of 15 May 2014, Dominicans applying for a Schengen Visa to enter the European Union (EU) will have to provide their biometric data, meaning a digital photograph and ten fingerprint scans.

The biometric data, along with the data provided in the Schengen visa application form, will be recorded in the EU Visa Information System (VIS) which will be strictly enforced, the EU’s regional office based in Barbados said on Wednesday.

Nationals of Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) countries that do not have Schengen Visa Waiver Status – Dominica, Grenada, St. Lucia and St. Vincent and the Grenadines – will have to apply in person at responsible EU Member State Embassy and provide their biometric information.

The four OECS countries are included in a Visa Waiver List as approved by the European Council and the European Parliament. However, the waiver will apply only after bilateral agreements are concluded between the EU and the four countries.

The VIS is a system for the exchange of data on short-stay visas between Schengen States and it is being progressively deployed, region by region, until all Schengen States’ consulates worldwide are connected.

According to the EU’s office, the introduction of biometric technology is intended to protect visa applicants against identity theft and prevent false identifications, which in certain cases lead to authorities refusing a visa or entry to a person who is entitled to enter.

Visa applicants will only have to provide such biometric data every 5 years. During this 5-year period, the fingerprints will be copied from the first visa application, so that frequent travellers will only have to complete the procedure once within this period.

Exemptions from the obligation of fingerprinting are provided for the following categories of applicants only:
• Children under 12,
• Persons for whom the collection of fingerprints is physically impossible;
• Heads of State or government and members of a national government with accompanying spouses, and the members of their official delegation when they are invited by Member States’ governments or by international organisations for an official purpose.

The Schengen Area includes the territory of 22 European Union countries and associated states.

 

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23 Comments

  1. DlpUwpDfp-WE
    February 27, 2015

    Every now and then I feel obligated 2 write on this blog. When the gov spoke of the MPID(National ID) with the rest of the OECS islands we laughed. When they speak of Regional Integration we laugh (OECS or CARICOM-wide). But it is through these arrangements that we get the waivers like this.

    The Electoral Commission was given the mandate to issue “National ID cards” almost two years now and after registering over 10,000 persons not one I am told has been issued 1 card. That was supposed to tie into 1) Registry and the new birth papers they giving out now, 2) Social Security who said thay would drop their cards for the new one, 3) Immigration who would not need OECS nationals to travel with a passport but a “National ID card”, 4) Inland Revenue who would link drivers license etc to the same card, & 5) Private sector (remember they boasted about linking banks etc to 1 gvernment system).

    What is going on? Has the funds been made available for all these promises to be kept?…

  2. Jail-corrupt-leaders
    May 15, 2014

    Can’t skerrit resists anything from the developed countries, Geez man Dominica seems so weak.

  3. Oh oh
    May 15, 2014

    I thought that we did not need to apply for visa again, now we waiting on bilateral agreement? OK then. we will wait.

  4. Reason
    May 14, 2014

    All these nonsensical comments are not necessary. My question is why months later our bi-lateral agreement which will eliminate the need for the visa is still unsigned?

    Ministry & Minister (the PM) responsible for Foreign Affairs get a move on it.

  5. Jay
    May 14, 2014

    Something is not right here.
    DA Vibes of 8 March, 2014, barely two months ago, reported that:” citizens of Dominica will no longer require a visa to travel to Schengen countries” This followed a statement made by Roosevelt Skerrit, who claimed credit for this development by saying that:”this arrangement was a result of Govt. efforts for hassle free travel for Dominican citizens”.
    I would appear that, on the contrary, the visa requirement has not been dropped but extended and that obtaining one has been made more cumbersome for people traveling on a Dominican passport.
    Who misled whom? It would be appreciate if GIS could clarify this please.

    • A tourist
      May 16, 2014

      Skerrt claims credit for visa free travel in the Schengen area!? :lol: It`s more likely that the EU decided in november 2012 to discuss visa free travel for 16 islands- including Dominica. This paper is still not through the EU parliament- looks like they are busy with other problems (-Ukraine,…). We all have to be patient…

  6. anonymous
    May 14, 2014

    this is confusing. I thought there was a report out recently that the European parliament agreed to make dominica exempt from applying for a shengen visa.

  7. Jejep
    May 14, 2014

    but wait…. was it not just the other day that i heard of visa free travels?

  8. Anonymous
    May 14, 2014

    Intellect you need to stop your comments you to naive!!!!!!!!!

  9. Anonymous
    May 14, 2014

    So long the new world order start is not because not they showing IP doesn’t mean that this was not in the pipe line for years biometric is not the insertion of a chip but j doe believe we getting closer to it

    • Concern citizen
      May 15, 2014

      We are in the world of chip and pin. Passports, bank cards, I’d cards and many more. Big brother is watching every move we make, it’s called progress.

  10. Concern citizen
    May 14, 2014

    The government should organised with the embassy in Barbados to have surgeries in Dominica to avoid resident who do not have funds to travel to Barbados to obtain their visa.

    • Educator
      May 14, 2014

      These visas are for temporary visits. If they do not have the funds to travel to Barbados to process their application, I doubt they will have the funds to travel to/through Europe.

      If you are running tight to the wire on your finances, I do not believe you can afford avacation. You would be better off to save until you can comfortably afford a vacation.

    • Jay
      May 15, 2014

      The EU does not have an Embassy in Barbados, merely a regional office and you must apply, in person, at the nearest Embassy of the country you wish to visit.
      If, for example, you want to visit Germany, you must apply and present yourself in person at the German Embassy in Trinidad, which is also responsible for Dominica. In practice this is cumbersome and expensive for the ordinary Dominican citizen and one must ask why it is our sister OECS countries St. Kitts & Nevis and Antigua & Barbuda are not similarly affected, since they enjoy Schengen visa waiver status, whereas we don’t.
      This puts our Economic citizenship programme at a severe disadvantage compared with those offered by these two countries.

      • Ex Labourite
        May 15, 2014

        Excellent information, based on what was said on DBS, I was of the opinion that entry into Europe would be Visa free. These politicians and their handlers have the propensity to mislead the unsuspecting public

  11. Anonymous
    May 14, 2014

    It has began!

    • Interested
      May 14, 2014

      What has begun

    • Christ Reigns!
      May 14, 2014

      Oh yes it’s here! Open you eyes People! The NEW WORLD ORDER is HERE!

      • JoJo
        May 15, 2014

        What have you been smoking brother? Can’t make sense of that at all!

    • colt
      May 14, 2014

      It has, It has.

    • Intellect
      May 14, 2014

      What has began [sic]?

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