Tuesday, 11th of December

EMN study “Visa liberalization on countries of destination – Latvian experience”

National report of Latvia on EMN study “Visa liberalization on countries of destination – Latvian experience” has now been published online.

The aim of the study is to give an overview of the Latvian experience in association with the visa-free regime. The study includes challenges, best practice examples and positive experience, as well as provides information of the latest trends in the respective field of migration policy. The study covers Western Balkans and Eastern Partnership countries which have successfully concluded visa liberalization dialogues with the respective action plans.

In implementation of the visa-free regime there are involved institutions subordinated to the Ministry of the Interior. According to statistical data, after implementation of the visa-free regime, the number of people crossing the external border of Western Balkans significantly increased but this can be explained by the overall increase of people crossing the border and it is not associated with the visa liberalization. The introduction of the visa-free regime has not led to any increases in the number of issued first time residence permits for citizens of Western Balkans in connection with education, entrepreneurship or rights to employment. Furthermore, the number of detained persons, persons irregularly crossing the border, attempts to use forged documents, and asylum-seekers also has not increased.