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GCC nationals have exciting prospects ahead as discussions about visa-free travel to Europe gain traction, Wego reports.

Jasem Albudaiwi, the GCC Secretary-General, recently announced plans to advocate for a waiver of Schengen visa requirements, which would simplify access to 27 European nations, including popular destinations like Germany, France, Italy, and Spain.

Albudaiwi shared this news during a televised interview on Saudi Television Channel 1, revealing intentions to present the case for the visa waiver during discussions with European Union leaders in Brussels, Belgium, slated for the second week of Ramadan. He expressed confidence in the GCC’s argument, highlighting the significant contributions made by Gulf citizens to Europe’s trade, education, and tourism sectors.

The Schengen visa currently allows for short visits of up to 90 days within a 180-day period, and it is available in single-entry or multiple-entry formats. Only nationals of the UAE are exempt at the moment. The proposed waiver aims to streamline travel processes for Gulf citizens, promote greater mobility, and foster increased interactions between the GCC and Europe.

Last year, the Council introduced the GCC Unified Tourist Visa, which enhances regional mobility. Expected to roll out in 2025, this initiative seeks to simplify travel arrangements within and beyond GCC borders.