Schengen Agreement limits mobility in the Community of Portuguese Speaking Countries

The future mobility scheme in the Community of Portuguese-Speaking Countries (CPLP) will be limited by short-stay visas because of the European Schengen agreement, which only exempts Brazil and Timor-Leste, said the Portuguese Minister of Foreign Affairs.

Minister Augusto Santos Silva, speaking at the Foreign Affairs and Portuguese Communities Committee of the Portuguese Parliament, said that Portugal supports “maximum freedom of movement,” in the CPLP, but is limited by agreements such as the Schengen area of free movement within the European Union.

The minister stressed, however, that in the case of long-term stays “for purposes of study, work or business (…) the current provisions are of a national nature and Portugal is available to follow the regime of maximum freedom of circulation within the CPLP.”

Santos Silva discussed with MPs the preparations for the next meeting of CPLP foreign ministers, to be held on 19 July in Mindelo, Cabo Verde, in which the agreement on mobility will be discussed, according to Portuguese news agency Lusa.

The draft legal agreement for this regime, presented in April by the CPLP’s Cape Verdean presidency, “has been worked on at a technical level,” and “the best outlook is that the Foreign Ministers can speak and validate the work that has been done.”

Santos Silva also hoped that the agreement would be approved at the next meeting of the organisation, which will be held in Luanda in 2020, “thus closing the Cabo Verde presidency and the Portuguese executive secretariat in the best possible way.” (Macauhub)