As of December 2019, applicants for Netherlands short-term visas based in Australia and New Zealand will have to apply through the VFS Global offices in both countries, as the Dutch embassies located there have outsourced visa processing to VFS.
Through two separate notices published in netherlandsandyou.nl, Dutch authorities announced that the external service provider VFS Global will be receiving applications for a visa for the Netherlands, Aruba, Bonaire, Curaçao, Saba, St Eustatius or St Maarten in several locations in Australia and New Zealand, and then forward the application to the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the Netherlands.
In Australia, applications for a Dutch short-term visa can be submitted to the visa application center in Sydney as of December 5. Whereas in Melbourne applications can be submitted at VACs as of December 10 and in Perth as of December 18.
One the other hand, in New Zealand, applications can be submitted at the VFS Global offices in Auckland as of December 13, 2019.
Appointments for application submission and interviews can be completed online through the VFS websites in the applicant’s country of residence.
According to the notice, this will allow applicants to complete more stages of the visa application process online.
“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs cooperates with external service providers to open up more front desks in locations closer to its customers, in order to reduce the travel burden. It is also keen to digitize the application process wherever possible,” the notice reads among others.
VFS Global, which stands for Visa Facilitation Services Global, is an outsourcing and technology services company to which many governments and diplomatic missions worldwide have outsourced visa and passport issuance-related administrative and non-discretionary tasks.