Rabat – The official website for booking appointments for a Schengen Visa for Spain (BLS) displays a disclaimer informing visitors of new conditions when applying for a visa.
Visas are exclusively available “for people who already have a visa which of at least one year and whose expiry date is after 31.12.2018”, says the disclaimer message.
The message specifies that visas can only be used after the borders have reopened and that entry to Spain is strictly reserved for specific cases.
BLS also informed visitors that upon arrival to Spain, by air or sea, passengers will be subject to a health check by Spanish authorities.
While the Spanish government acknowledged irregularities in its visa application system for Morocco, Egypt, Iraq, Namibia, Russia, Ukraine, Bolivia, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), they refused to provide further details on the types of irregularities, claiming that paper files are destroyed “after two years due to the huge volume of files processed per year.”
In 2020, the Spanish government updated visa requirements for Moroccans and increased the visa fees. Children aged 6 to 12 are subject to a fee of €60 (MAD 641), and applicants aged 12 and above are subject to a fee of €80 (MAD 855).
In 2018, Moroccans spent $44 million (MAD 424 million) of which $8 million (MAD 77 million) worth of applications were declined.
Beyond the financial aspect of visa applications, Moroccans face many challenges in obtaining a Schengen visa.
Moroccan MPs at the house of counselors have addressed this issue back in 2020. Abdelwahed Driouche, a member of the house of counselors, told MWN that the process would be much easier if the European Union took into account the strong EU-Morocco partnerships.
Moroccans make up a large portion of Schengen visa applications each year despite the increasing rigidity of the process.