The Schengen zone of countries expanded on Friday, December 21 to include Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Slovenia, and Malta. Border controls are no longer necessary between these countries and the other members of the Schengen zone.
The nine countries admitted to the Schengen Agreement were approved on December 6, 2007 after visits by experts from the Council of Europe provided evidence that all aspects of Schengen acquis were being applied. The Schengen criteria include evaluation of external border control, visas, data protection, police cooperation and implementation of the Schengen Information System (SIS).
Visitors from third countries with a visa or residence permit in any of the nine countries admitted will now be able to travel by land or sea throughout the Schengen area. Airport border controls will reflect the new changes as of March 30, 2008.
Schengen evaluation is still in progress for Bulgaria, Romania, and Cyprus. There is no definite schedule for their admission. The full press release is available here.