Temporary Visa for Venezuelan passport holders for traveling to the ABC islands

ORANJESTAD - After months of deliberation and consultation with the Minister of Foreign Relations of the Kingdom of the Netherlands and the Prime Ministers of Aruba and Curacao, the decision was made to introduce a temporary Visa for Venezuelan passport holders who visit the islands.

The introduction of this measure is the Minister of Foreign Relations’ competence, as Visa policies are matters of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

The temporary Visa policy was needed as the situation in Venezuela has worsened and illegal migration has become alarming. Many countries have already decided to introduce a Visa for Venezuelan migrants, like Peru, Panama, Ecuador, Guyana, Trinidad & Tobago and Chile.

The introduction of the Visa is an integral element of a series of measures that are in place to address the migratory flow towards the ABC islands. The duration of this policy depends on the situation in Venezuela. As soon as the situation improves, the Visa policy will be halted. The introduction of the Visa will take about 6 months. It will take time since resources and additional personnel is required at the Dutch embassy in Caracas to process the visa requests.

Another measure complementing the Visa policy is the ESTA-A; an Advanced Passenger Information system, a travel authorization to verify the information of the travelers in advance and the introduction of the Pre Boarding checks, a procedure to control all traveler before boarding. 

It is important to clarify that the Visa policy will include exceptions. Venezuelan travelers with a valid US visa or visitor’s permit for countries like the USA, Canada, Great Britain, and Ireland are not required to request the Visa for the ABC islands.

The policy for St Maarten is different as the island is divided between the French Republic and the Kingdom of the Netherlands. For the effective introduction of the Visa for St Maarten, the Minister has to negotiate with the French part to have an effective border control without the Visa. It is the intention for St Maarten to also be included in the Visa policy.

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