ALDE supports reforming the European Visa Information System
Today MEPs have voted on the proposed overhaul of the functioning of the Union's Visa Information System (VIS). ALDE supports key elements of the reform to ensure the interoperability of the system as well as giving easier access to Europol and law enforcement authorities to the database.
By enlarging its scope, the VIS will also facilitate a better overview of long stay visas and residence permits.
Gerard Deprez MEP, ALDE's shadow rapporteur on the file commented ahead of the vote:
"The amendments we have proposed will improve and harmonize the processing of visa applications. The inclusion of the long stay visa and the residence permit will be beneficial for all residents, as their residence rights can easily be proven throughout the Schengen territory and for all Member States as it will contribute to enhancing security and mutual trust. The definition of the data controller in line with the GDPR, regular monitoring of the impacts on fundamental rights, and safeguards on the cooperation with service providers, in particular on security, confidentiality and data protection are assurances that we were keen to obtain. I fully support the text in its current form."
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Note to the editors:
The Visa Information System, operative since 2011, facilitates the visa application procedure while preventing visa shopping, visa fraud and, more broadly, irregular migration. The system includes data of more than 48 million visa applications and 41 million sets of fingerprints. Every year around 16 million short-stay Schengen visas are issued with approx. one million VIS operations taking place every day.