“Today, every Ukrainian can have a fantastic coffee in Bratislava, can go to Warsaw by a cheap flight, or can visit the Vienna Opera," Poroshenko told a ceremony on the Slovakian border, at the Uzhgorod border crossing in the Zakarpattia region.

The move boosted the value of the Ukrainian passport, he added.

Slovakian President Andrej Kiska, also at the ceremony, welcomed Poroshenko on his side of the border after Ukraine’s leader opened a symbolic door with a key-shaped passport.

Under the new visa regime, Ukrainians with a biometric passport will be able to enter the EU without a visa for 90 days in any 180-day period, for tourism, to visit relatives or friends, or for business purposes, but not to work.

The visa exemption applies to all EU countries, except the U.K. and Ireland, which are not part of the Schengen zone. The EU Parliament approved the visa waiver two months ago, and the EU Council approved it last month.

In February, European lawmakers also passed similar legislation for Georgia. Both former Soviet states had long urged the EU to grant their citizens visa-free travel to help deepen ties with the West.

Anadolu Agency