NewsMarch 2, 2020

First Permanent Schengen Visa Application Centre Opens in Male’

A Permanent VFS Visa Application Centre has opened in Male, which provides visa facilitation services to Maldivians who wish to travel to Germany and the Czech Republic. The Centre was inaugurated by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Abdulla Shahid, Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany, Jörn Rohde and Ambassador of the Czech Republic, Milan Hovorka.

Speaking at the opening ceremony, Minister Shahid thanked the Government of Germany and especially Ambassador Rohde for taking the initiative to establish the Visa Centre in the Maldives. The Minister also thanked the Government of the Czech Republic for their support towards the initiative, which the Minister noted, reflected the growing ties of friendship and cooperation between the countries.

Both Ambassador Rohde and Ambassador Hovorka also expressed confidence that this initiative would further strengthen the increased tourism and trade between the Maldives and their respective countries.

The VFS Centre would initially cater to those traveling to Germany and the Czech Republic as the main destination. Minister Shahid, however, expressed confidence that more European countries would follow Germany and the Czech Republic and join with VFS in the close future.

The establishment of the VFS Centre in the Maldives aims to bring an end to the time-consuming and costly process for Maldivians applying for a Schengen visa through embassies based in Colombo or New Delhi. Such Visa facilitation services are part of the Government’s broader objectives in providing quality consular services for Maldivians.

The Maldives has signed visa waiver agreements with the United Arab Emirates, Russia, Morocco, and Thailand last year, and expanded its visa arrangements with the neighboring countries of India and Sri Lanka.