The United States has the raised hopes of Croatian citizens that they can soon travel to the US without a visa.
This comes after talks between Mike Pompeo, US Secretary of State, and Croatian Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic and Foreign Minister Gordan Grlic Radman.
Pompeo said he is convinced Croatia will soon meet the conditions to join the Visa Waiver Programme (VWP) that enables most citizens of participating countries to travel to the US for tourism or business for up to 90 days without a visa.
Schengen Visa Info reports Croatia is close to its integration into the VWP as the country is busy fulfilling the final criteria to be part of the programme.
According to the visa news site, Croatia needs to lower the visa refusal rate to the minimum.
During the past three years, authorities reportedly managed to reduce the refusal rate from 5.9% to 4%.
The target rate, however, is under 3%, meaning that the country is close to achieving this objective.
Citizens of 39 countries are currently eligible to enter the US for tourism or business purposes and stay for three months without the need to apply for a visa first.
Schengen Visa Info reports that up to this point, Croatia, Bulgaria and Romania are not included in the VWP. These countries are EU member states, but not part of the Schengen Zone.