Spectator on facebook

Spectator on facebook

IN SHORT

Slovakia ready for Schengen: Austrian minister

Slovakia is ready to enter the Schengen Zone, Austrian Interior Minister Günther Platter (centre) said during his visit to the modernised Slovak-Ukrainian border crossing at Vyšné Nemecké.
photo: TASR

AUSTRIAN Interior Minister Günther Platter praised Slovakia for its readiness to enter the Schengen Zone during a recent visit to the Slovak-Ukrainian border.

A year ago, Platter was one of the biggest critics of Slovakia's preparedness for entering the border-free zone. But this month, he said Slovakia is well prepared and fulfills the requirements.

The Schengen zone would guarantee Slovakia one of the main advantages of the European Union - the free movement of its citizens across the borders of other member countries - as of January 1, 2008.

On October 8, during a visit to the border crossing at Vyšné Nemecké, Platter signed a memorandum of understanding between Austria and Slovakia, the SITA newswire wrote. His Slovak counterpart, Robert Kaliňák, signed the memorandum for the Slovak side.

In the memorandum, the two countries committed themselves to creating common security strategies, developing more intensive shared plans for the eastern border of the EU, carrying out of important shared security activities, and the intensifying their exchange of information.

Platter said the cooperation with Slovakia has been excellent so far. Kaliňák expressed gratitude for the active aid and cooperation of other EU countries, and particularly Austria.

"We were successful in part thanks to Austrian experts who spent weeks on the eastern border," Kaliňák told SITA.

It cost Slovakia about Sk3.5 billion (€104.2 million) to bring in the measures to make it ready for the Schengen zone, and technical equipment for the eastern EU border with Ukraine cost more than Sk1 billion.

The EU's Council of Ministers is expected to decide on the entry of candidates to the Schengen zone over November 8 and 9.

"As far as Slovakia is concerned, my evaluation is highly positive," Platter said.

The processing of personal data is subject to our Privacy Policy and the Cookie Policy. Before submitting your e-mail address, please make sure to acquaint yourself with these documents.

Top stories

How rock music helped bring down the totalitarian regime Video

A new film shows that Rock & Roll, forbidden in the Soviet Union, helped to end the Cold War.

Illustrative Stock Photo

Movies under an open sky feel differently than in an air-conditioned cinema Photo

The popularity of outdoor cinemas is increasing in Bratislava

Bažant Kinematograf on the Magio Pláž beach

Peter Sagan announces split with his wife Katarína

The Slovak cycling star who has a young son said “It will be much better this way”.

Peter Sagan marries Katarína, November 2015.

Top 3 news from Last Week in Slovakia Video

Slovakia to buy 14 American fighter jets.

This archive picture from 2014 shows an older model of the F-16 fighter jets.