HC Deb 20 May 1953 vol 515 c136W
Mr. J. Hynd

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs what action he has taken to bring about the abolition of visas for travel between the United Kingdom and Germany.

Mr. Nutting

The Federal Government have decided as from 1st July, 1953, to dispense with the requirement of a visa for nationals of countries which are members of the Council of Europe or the Organisation for European Economic Co-operation in cases where the stay in Germany does not exceed three months. Her Majesty's Government consider that any such relaxation of travel restrictions between nations is desirable, and welcome this decision as far as this country is concerned. One effect of this will be to put British subjects on the same footing as American citizens in this respect.

In present circumstances it is, unfortunately, impossible for us in return to waive the visa requirement for all holders of Federal German passports, but the visa issuing authorities in the United Kingdom and the appropriate British visa issuing authorities elsewhere are being instructed (with effect from 1st July, 1953) to make no charge for visas granted to German nationals holding valid Federal German passports who have occasion to travel to any part of the United Kingdom. Her Majesty's Government hope that this will substantially assist in promoting travel between the Federal Republic and this country. In addition, Her Majesty's Government have agreed that holders of Federal German ministerial, diplomatic and Service passports need not obtain visas to enter or pass through the United Kingdom.