New fee for travellers to the USA
TT/The Local · 9 Aug 2010, 11:23
Published: 09 Aug 2010 08:06 GMT+02:00
Updated: 09 Aug 2010 11:23 GMT+02:00
The fee will be levied on citizens from countries within the so-called visa waiver system, which includes Sweden, and the Swedish EU commissioner Cecilia Malmström has expressed concern that the charge could be a hindrance to trans-Atlantic travel.
"I have on several occasions expressed my concern over the introduction of this fee. The rules contravene the USA's promise to ease movement across the Atlantic and will be an extra burden for EU travellers heading to the USA," Malmström said in an official statement.
US authorities took the decision to introduce the levy on the electronic form which must by submitted to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security for all those seeking to travel to the country under the programme.
The EU Commission has expressed dismay at the charge after having previously stated that the "Electronic System for Travel Authorization" should not be considered a visa programme and thus should remain free of charge.