European embassies to stop issuing schengen visas on old passports

An old generation passport and the E-passport./COURTESY

The German and Belgium and Hungarian governments will not issue schengen visa’s  to Kenyans holding the old generation passports as from 1st June.

The Schengen visa is a short term visa issued by European countries under the Schengen area allowing the holder to travel to those countries without having to acquire another visa at the entry point of a country other than the one where the visa was issued.

The countries are Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland.

This comes as the government and Kenyans rush to beat a September deadline to phase out the old generation passports.

In a statement issued on Wednesday, the two embassies said that the move was in line with the Schengen visa rules which state that visas should only be issued on passports whose validity is more than 90 days after the expiry of the visa being issued.

“Please note that according to the announcement of the Kenyan Government, the old Kenyan passports will expire on 01.09.2019. Pursuant to current #Schengen law, passports must still be valid at least 90 days after the end of the validity of a given visa.” The Belgium Embassy said in a statement.

Kenya and other East African countries are is set to replace the old generation passports with the electronic East African passports in a move aimed at curbing forgery, promoting integration among East African countries and easing clearance for the passport holders in international airports.