Croatia Could Join Schengen Zone in Three Years

25. 07. 2013

Croatia Could Join Schengen Zone in Three Years

Interior Minister Gregor Virant met his Croatian counterpart Ranko Ostojić at the Dragonja border crossing on Wednesday to take another look at the recently introduced joint police checks on the Slovenian-Croatian border. He said the next step for Croatia was entering the Schengen Area, which could happen in three years.

The joint border control simplifies procedures and makes it easier for passengers to cross the border, while the cooperation between the two police forces is excellent, Virant said after the meeting, which was also attended by Slovenian Police Commissioner Stanislav Veniger and his Croatian counterpart Vlado Dominić.


"We can't wait for Croatia to enter the Schengen Area so that the border is finally lifted," Virant said, commenting on the large hold-ups at the main crossings between Slovenia and Croatia during the summer season.



Croatia will start procedures for joining the no-passport zone in two years following its entry to the EU on 1 July, the minister explained, adding that he was assured by the Croatian counterpart that preparations were taking place at full speed.


"We can count on Croatia entering the Schengen regime relatively soon", Virant said. According to him, the required procedures following the mandatory two-year evaluation period could be finished "very quickly, perhaps in half a year or one year".


The single police checkpoints were set up on the Slovenian side, because these checkpoints are better equipped and ensure confidentiality of the Schengen information system, the minister explained.


The single checkpoints were introduced at 33 out of a total of 57 crossings along the Slovenian-Croatian border. The countries are currently negotiation putting an additional 11 border crossings on the list.


Croatian Minister Ostojić also assessed the cooperation of the two national police forces as excellent and pointed to the importance of the joint control for better traffic flow and satisfaction of passengers and tourists.


Source: Slovenia Times


Croatia Could Join Schengen Zone in Three Years