Citizens of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have been allowed visa-free entry into Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden which are part of the Schengen region after a yes vote on 27 February by the European Parliament to waive visa requirements for Emiratis to the 26 Schengen states.

European citizens are allowed visa-free entry into the UAE for decades. The visa-free travel facility to Schengen states has made the UAE the first Arab country to have this status, which has come through the country’s open business and tourism policies that attract visitors from around the world to the UAE, especially the emirate of Dubai.

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

In a vote held on 27 February in Strasbourg, the capital and principal city of the Alsace region in eastern France, 523 of the 577 members voted in favour of allowing Emiratis visa-free entry into Schengen states. The EU council will now formally endorse the vote.