Home Travel & Adventure Morocco Ceases Acceptance of 24-Hour Spanish Visas Issued for Ceuta & Melilla

Morocco Ceases Acceptance of 24-Hour Spanish Visas Issued for Ceuta & Melilla


The special 24-hour visas that the consulates located in the Spanish consulates in Tetouan and Nador issue will no longer be accepted by the Moroccan authorities for crossing the borders into the Spanish enclaves of Melilla and Ceuta.

The Rabat government has announced that they will now accept only Schengen Visas and residence permits for those wishing to leave its territory, into the Spanish enclaves. The move will mainly affect cross border workers who rely on these visas to cross the border and complete necessary documentation before they start working there, SchengenVisaInfo reports.

The decision to reject these visas, which are issued with a validity of only 24 hours, is being taken two years after the visa was first introduced by the Government of Pedro Sánchez, in the month of Ramadan 2022.

The creation of such a visa followed the reopening of the borders, which had been shut since the outbreak of the Coronavirus pandemic in March 2020.

The decision to no longer accept them has been announced by newspaper ‘Al Ahdath al Maghribia’, according to which in the recent days, only holders of a valid residence permits and a letter of access signed by the authorities of Ceuta and a Schengen visa have been authorised to cross into the enclaves.

The president of the Confederation of Entrepreneurs of Ceuta Arantxa Campos believes that with this measure, the Rabat government is categorising cross-border workers as residents of Ceuta.

Perhaps Morocco’s objective with this measure is that these workers, the majority of whom are domestic workers, are not cross-border but rather residents of Ceuta.

Arantxa Campos, president of the Confederation of Entrepreneurs of Ceuta

The Spanish government is yet to come with a statement on the matter.  French digital media Le360 reports that negotiations are underway between Rabat and Madrid in a bid to find an agreement regarding the matter.

70% of Ceuta’s Domestic Workers as Cross-Border

While before the pandemic, the number of Moroccan women alone, working in Ceuta, and crossing the borders daily, was over 2,200, now the number of foreigners documented in the enclave is around one thousand.

This means that approximately 70 per cent of domestic workers in the city are residents of Morocco that work in Ceuta by the day, and leave before night.

It is estimated there are a total of 8,000 cross-border workers in the city, when taking into account both documented and undocumented workers.

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