Today the Commission adopted two reports concluding that Colombia and Peru fulfil the criteria to start negotiating agreements allowing their citizens visa-free travel to the EU.
After assessing the criteria, including security risks and risks of irregular immigration, economic benefits for the EU and human rights considerations, the Commission has concluded that the necessary conditions are met for the start of visa waiver negotiations between the EU and Colombia and Peru.
Once the reports have been discussed in the appropriate committees and groups of the European Parliament and the Council, the Commission will seek authorisation from the Council to negotiate short-stay visa waiver agreements with each of the two countries. If the Council grants such an authorisation, negotiations could start in the first trimester of 2015. Only after the agreements enter into force will visa-free for the citizens of these countries become a reality. This could happen, at the very earliest, in the second half of 2015.