The Council of the European Union today adopted the changes to the regulation which involves granting a visa free regime for the Schengen Area to Georgian citizens.
The final document will be signed on March 1 at 14:00. After it is signed by the chairman of the Council and the President of the European Parliament, the regulation will be posted in the EU Official Journal.
At a plenary session on February 2, members of the European Parliament decided to grant Georgians visa free travel to the Schengen Area. With 553 votes in favour, 66 against, and 28 abstentions, the voting on visa liberalization has come to an end.
Georgian citizens will be able to travel to the Schengen Area without a visa. They will be able to travel to 22 member state countries of the European Union and four non-EU member states for 90 days in a 180-day period.
Many high-level European officials such as EP President Martin Schulz, European Commissioner for European Neighbourhood Policy & Enlargement Negotiations Johannes Hahn, and the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Federica Mogherini, had previously expressed their support in granting Georgians visa free travel.
EU-Georgia relations have strengthened in recent years. An EU-Georgia Association Agreement was initiated at the EU Eastern Partnership Summit in Vilnius, Lithuania, on November 29, 2013, and the Association Agreement between Georgian and the European Union was signed on June 27, 2014.