1st phase to reopening Schengen and EU borders
Following the coordinated reopening of the European internal borders on June 15th, the European Member States have decided to allow additional non-essential travel from 14 countries outside the EU and Schengen zone as of 1 July 2020.
On the basis of the EU framework, the Belgian government will soon evaluate when and under what conditions non-essential travelers from these 14 countries will be allowed to re-enter Belgian territory. In addition, the exceptions for essential travel will be extended. Students, highly qualified workers, persons taking part in meetings at international organizations and seafarers will again be able to travel to the EU from 1 July. EU citizens and third country nationals legally residing in the EU and their family members will also be able to travel again anywhere within the EU. Until now, they were only allowed to travel to their country of residence. Travelers are in any case advised to inform themselves well in advance of each trip about the measures taken and to be taken in the country of destination.
Travel restrictions from Algeria, Australia, Canada, Georgia, Japan, Montenegro, Morocco, New Zealand, Rwanda, Serbia, South Korea, Thailand, Tunisia and Uruguay to the EU+ can be lifted. For China, this relaxation will also apply if EU citizens are allowed to travel to China for non-essential journeys. Under which conditions and within which timeframe travel restrictions from these countries will be relaxed, remains a decision of the EU Member States themselves.
The list of countries was drawn up following thorough negotiations between EU Member States, which together drew up an evaluation framework based on objective criteria, such as the health situation. Due to the rapid evolution of the COVID-19 pandemic, this list and the situation in all third countries will be reviewed every 15 days on the basis of this framework on the basis of the most up-to-date data.
Belgium will implement the European agreement, but takes a cautious approach with the rapidly changing epidemiological situation in mind. In the coming days, the Belgian government will therefore evaluate and soon decide when and under what conditions non-essential travelers from these 14 countries will regain access to Belgian territory.
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Team Leader Immigration Belgium
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