The Commission Staff Working Document (CSWD) accompanies the Third Report under the Visa Suspension Mechanism. This CSWD builds on the information and the assessment provided in the First and Second Report under the Visa Suspension Mechanism and provides a detailed analysis of the most relevant and recent developments relating to the implementation of the visa liberalisation benchmarks.
The statistical part of this report covers 26 EU Member States that apply Regulation (EU) 2018/1806 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 14 November 2018 listing the third countries whose nationals must be in possession of visas when crossing the external borders and those whose nationals are exempt from that requirement and the four Schengen Associated Countries (hereinafter referred to as "Schengen+ area")1. The assessment of specific areas is based primarily on the information provided to Eurostat2 by countries in the Schengen+ area, information provided by EU Agencies (Europol, eu-LISA, the European Asylum Support Office (EASO) and the European Border Coast Guard Agency (Frontex)3, the exchange of information between the Commission, European External Action Service (EEAS) and authorities of the visa-free countries as well as 2019 country enlargement reports, where applicable. The report has also benefitted from information provided by some EU Member States in the Visa Working Party, including by taking into account the assessment by the Finnish Presidency on 16 October 20194.