EU Agency for Asylum: Presidency and European Parliament reach a broad political agreement
Veronica Huertas Cerdeira
Press officer (Home affairs; Counter-terrorism coordination)
On 28 June 2017, the Maltese Presidency of the Council and the European Parliament representatives reached a broad political agreement ad referendum on all twelve chapters of the regulation on the European Union Agency for Asylum on the basis of the mandate given by Coreper on 20 December 2016.
The agreement is subject to endorsement by Coreper in the near future following further work on the recitals. Furthermore, the agreement excludes some parts of the text which are related to other legislative proposals in the package on the revision of the Common European Asylum System (CEAS) which have not yet been finalised. An overall agreement will only be possible once the linkages with the other legislative proposals in the CEAS package have been resolved.
The proposal for a European Union Agency for Asylum aims to improve the implementation and functioning of the CEAS by building on the work of the current European Asylum Support Office (EASO).
“This is part of the EU's efforts to have a fully-fledged EU Agency for Asylum that can respond better to the evolving irregular migration challenge and to reflect its enhanced role in a reformed Common European Asylum System.”Michael Farrugia, Maltese Minister for Home Affairs and National Security
The new regulation will transform EASO into a fully-fledged Agency responsible for facilitating the functioning of the CEAS, ensuring convergence in the assessment of applications for international protection across the Union, and providing operational and technical assistance to member states.
Work will continue during the incoming presidency to finalise the text. The agreement will then be submitted to Coreper for endorsement on behalf of the Council.
Following its Communication of 6 April 2016 on the reform of the CEAS, the Commission presented in May and in July seven legislative proposals, including the above-mentioned proposal for a regulation on the European Union Agency for Asylum, with a view to:
- improving the functioning of CEAS by eliminating differing treatment of asylum seekers and varying recognition rates among member states
- reducing secondary movements and contributing to a fairer distribution among the Member States of the responsibility to offer protection to those in need.