EU Visa Policy and Conditionality: A Two Way Road

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EU Visa Policy and Conditionality: A Two Way Road

This paper considers conditionality in EU visa policy. The criteria that the EU uses to impose visa requirements on nationals of third countries are set out in EU legislation. These criteria have recently undergone development, with a new reference to human rights and economic benefit. They however remain vague and have been criticized for this reason. They are given substance in ‘visa liberalization roadmaps’ that the EU agrees with third countries. This paper considers how these visa liberalization roadmaps vary depending on the country in question revealing EU foreign policy and security approaches and goals. Thus, the paper considers visa liberalization roadmaps with accession countries (Western Balkans and Turkey), Eastern Partnership countries, Mediterranean states and other third countries such as Peru, Colombia and Caribbean states. The paper also consider specifically the criterion of reciprocity. It assesses the extent to which the EU has been able to use this criterion vis-à-vis third countries such as the US and Canada. With regard to these countries, the EU and its Member States have been subject to conditionality themselves, and the relevant roadmaps imposed on them may have influenced the EU roadmaps imposed on third countries. Insistence on the reciprocity criterion by the EU may however have also resulted in changes to the national laws of these countries.


School of Business and Law, University of East London

Dr Annalisa Meloni is a senior lecturer in law at the University of East London. She holds a PhD in Law and an LLM from University College London, and an LLB(Hons) in English & European Laws from the University of Essex. Her research field is EU justice and home affairs, with a particular interest in the EU visa policy and external border controls. Her latest publication is ‘Visa Code Regulation (EC) No 810/2009’ in: Kay Hailbronner and Daniel Thym (eds.), EU Immigration and Asylum Law. Commentary, 2nd edition (C.H. Beck/Hart/Nomos, 2016).