The EU is increasing the scope of its support for measures in the fields of migration, border management and security in order to help address growing challenges. The Council today reached partial general approaches on three sectoral home affairs proposals in the context of the multiannual financial framework (MFF) for the period 2021-2027. Budget-related and horizontal issues which are currently being discussed as part of the negotiations on the EU's next MFF, as well as issues clearly linked to the common European asylum system reform package, fall outside the scope of the agreements.
The sectoral home affairs proposals are:
-the asylum and migration fund, which will provide support to member states in their management of asylum and migration. The partial general approach equips the EU with the necessary tools to respond to evolving migration challenges, both within the EU and in cooperation with other countries.
-the instrument for financial support for border management and visa, which will ensure a strong and effective integrated border management at the EU's external borders. The partial general approach reflects recent developments such as the planned expansion of the European Border and Coast Guard, the modernisation of the common visa policy and the development and interoperability of large-scale IT systems (including the European travel information and authorisation system, and the entry exit system)
-the internal security fund, which supports prevention and coordination between police, judicial and other competent authorities to protect citizens. The partial general approach builds on the existing fund and adapts it to new developments such as the need to intensify the fight against terrorism, serious and organised crime and cybercrime
Overall, the three Council negotiating positions enlarge the scope of the support initially proposed by the Commission for the policy areas concerned. The list of eligible actions and measures has been improved and some limiting percentages have been either removed or increased. It is proposed that high priorities such as projects in third countries to tackle high migratory pressure, the fight against cybercrime and the interoperability of IT systems should benefit from a higher co-financing rate.
The agreed texts allow for synergies with other EU funds in the field of integration, as well as on the use of multipurpose equipment, including ICT systems. The role of EU agencies, such as Europol or Frontex, during the programming phase has been defined more clearly. For all comitology decisions, where the Commission is granted implementing powers, the examination procedure has been proposed, which allows for a qualified majority of member states to decide the adoption or rejection of an implementing act.
The partial general approaches agreed by the Council will serve as basis for future negotiations with the European Parliament.
On 13 June 2018, as part of the next Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) package, the Commission issued three sectoral proposals in the area of home affairs. Drawing from lessons learned, and taking into account new policy developments, the Commission proposed a significant reinforcement of the EU budget in the areas of migration, borders and security.