Spain detected the same irregularities in seven other countries in the last 20 years.
Rabat – The Spanish government acknowledged irregularities in terms of visa issuance in Spanish embassies and consulates in Morocco in the last 20 years.
Europe Press reported on Sunday that the Spanish government recognized issues in terms of visa issuance in Morocco and seven other countries, including Egypt, Iraq, Namibia, Russia, Ukraine, Bolivia, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).
The government’s explanation came in the form of a response to a question from MP Jon Inarritu. While reporting the MP’s question, the Spanish press criticized the government for not providing data and details regarding the number of visas affected as well as the type or irregularities.
In response, the government reportedly said that the data cannot be provided since the regulations on “filing allow the destruction of paper files after two years due to the huge volume of files processed per year.”
The Spanish government also reassured the MP that an immediate internal investigation has been opened under the supervision of the General Inspectorate of Services to shed light on the irregularity cases.
“All the cases detected were resolved by judicial or administrative means depending on the seriousness of the case,” Spain argued, emphasizing that no such cases were detected in the past months.
In 2020, the Spanish government updated visa fees requirements on Moroccans and other travelers across the world.
Since February 2020, Moroccan visa applicants aged 12 years old and above pay €80 (MAD 855) per application rather than €60 (MAD 641).
Children aged 6 old to 11 must pay €40 (MAD 427) instead of €35 (MAD 374). Children under 6 will remain exempt from visa fees, the note explained.
The new requirements are part of the visa code update from the EU Council in June 2019. The new code applies to European Union member states and associate countries.
In 2018, Moroccans spent $44 million on 662,586 Schengen applications.
About 533,861 Moroccans received Schengen visas in 2018. Moroccans mostly applied for visas for France, Spain, the Netherlands, and Italy.