The European Union has entered into visa facilitation agreements with these countries (followed by the date of signature/date of entry into force): a stabilisation and association agreement (ASA) came into force on 1 April 2009, setting out the conditions for accession. Short stays in the EU were facilitated in 2008 with the entry into force of an agreement on the facilitation of visa issuance. Albania is a potential candidate country for accession after the European Council in Thessaloniki in June 2003. On 18 February 2008, the Council adopted a new European partnership with Albania. The Stabilization and Association Agreement (ASA) with the country was signed on 12 June 2006 and came into force on 1 April 2009. It replaces the interim agreement on trade and trade aspects, which came into force in December 2006. The EU-Albania Visa Facilitation Agreement came into force in January 2008, while the readmission agreement came into force in 2006. 7 March 2008 – EU Justice and Home Affairs Commissioner Franco Frattini launches dialogue on visa liberalisation between Albania and the European Community. Agreements facilitating the issuance of visas promote contact between citizens between citizens and nationals of non-EU countries.
The agreements facilitate the issuance of visas for short-term stays and do not exceed 90 days of stay within 180 days. First report under the Visa Suspension Mechanism in 2017 – all eight countries have demonstrated a total commitment to meeting the required requirements and have made significant efforts to implement a series of far-reaching reforms as part of their visa liberalisation processes. The Commission believes that all the countries assessed continue to meet the benchmarks for visa liberalisation. 1 January 2008 – The Visa Facilitation Agreement (VFA) comes into force, the first concrete step towards visa-free travel for citizens of the Western Balkans. 1 May 2006 – The readmission agreement between Albania and the European Community comes into force. On 19 December 2009, the visa requirement for nationals of the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia for stays in the Schengen area for up to 90 days over a period of one semester was lifted, provided they held a biometric passport (for example. Appendix II, Part I of the EU Visa Regulation). 3 June 2019 – The European Commission rejects the Netherlands` visa application for Albania.
The agreements, all of which have similar content and structure, apply to planned stays in the Schengen area up to 90 days per semester (short stays). They apply to nationals of these countries around the world. You can access the agreements via the links on the right. 16 July 2009 – The EC proposes to the EU Council of Ministers to repeal the visa regime for Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia. Reports under the Visa Suspension Mechanism The Commission reports annually on the operation of the visa exemption with the countries of the Western Balkans (Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia) as well as with the Eastern Partnership countries (Moldova, Georgia and Ukraine).