Navigating the process of obtaining a Schengen visa has proven to be particularly challenging for applicants from North African countries. Recent data highlights the struggles faced by individuals from Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, and the UAE, who encountered significant rejection rates.
High Rejection Rates
Statistics reveal that applicants from North African countries faced considerable obstacles in securing Schengen visas. Notably, 28% of Moroccan applicants, comprising nearly 120,000 individuals, were denied visas. The financial toll of these non-refunded fees amounted to 9.5 million euros.
The situation for Algerians was even more dire, with a rejection rate of 45.8%. 179,000 Algerian citizens lost 31.3 million euros in visa fees due to their unsuccessful applications. For perspective, this figure is nearly equivalent to Italy’s allocation for a program aimed at enhancing the skills of the unemployed and workers vulnerable to job displacement caused by automation and artificial intelligence.
Mixed Results for Other North African Nations
Tunisian applicants experienced a slightly lower rejection rate at 29.1%, resulting in a loss of 3.9 million euros in visa fees for those whose applications were denied. Citizens of the UAE faced a 22.5% rejection rate, leading to losses of 3.37 million euros.
Top 10 Countries and Their Outcomes
In 2022, the top 10 countries with the highest Schengen visa application rates included Saudi Arabia (with a rejection rate of 5.1%), the United Kingdom (with a rejection rate of 4.1%), and Thailand (with a rejection rate of 8.1%).
While the absolute figures indicate losses for applicants from these countries, they pale in comparison to the losses incurred by Algerian applicants. For instance, 18,300 Saudi applicants were denied Schengen visas in 2022, resulting in financial losses of 1.46 million euros when considering the visa fee of 80 euros.
The Schengen visa application process has proven to be a challenging journey, particularly for applicants from North African countries. The high rejection rates indicate the barriers faced by these individuals, both in terms of their aspirations to visit Schengen countries and the financial losses incurred due to non-refunded visa fees. As the visa landscape evolves, it is essential for both applicants and authorities to engage in continuous dialogue to improve the process and ensure fair access for all travelers.