The New Pact on Migration and Asylum is a set of regulations and policies to create a fairer, efficient, and more sustainable migration and asylum process for the European Union. The Pact, proposed in September 2020, is designed to manage and normalise migration for the long term, providing certainty, clarity and decent conditions for people arriving in the EU. It also seeks to establish a common approach to migration and asylum that is based on solidarity, responsibility, and respect for human rights.
Progress on the Pact
The Pact has delivered various outcomes:
Recommendation on an EU mechanism for preparedness and management of crises related to migration: This has developed an early warning and forecasting system allowing prompt identification of migration situations, enabling effective preparedness and response.
Recommendation on cooperation on search and rescue and guidance on non-criminalisation of search and rescue: This recommendation improves cooperation among EU Member States in managing private vessels involved in Search and Rescue (SAR) operations. It has set the ground for the regular meetings of the European Contact Group on SAR. The guidance prevents the criminalisation of SAR humanitarian operations.
The European Union Agency for Asylum (EUAA) replaced the European Asylum Support Office (EASO) with more tools to support Member States in bringing greater convergence to asylum and reception practices at the EU’s high standards.
Return Coordinator: The EU Return Coordinator was appointed on 2 March 2022 to establish an effective and common European return system and improve the coordination of actions between the EU and the Member States.
Voluntary Solidarity Mechanism: 23 EU Member States and associated countries have agreed since 22 June 2022 to support Member States under pressure, including by pledging to relocate some of their asylum seekers and through financial contributions. With relocations ongoing, more than 1000 asylum seekers have been relocated from Cyprus, Greece, Italy, Malta and Spain by early 2023.
State of Play
In September 2022, the European Parliament and the five rotating Presidencies of the Council signed a joint declaration on the timeline for the organisation, coordination and adoption of proposals under the Common European Asylum System (CEAS) and the New Pact by the end of this legislative period, with the view to conclude negotiations by February 2024.
The agreed timeline includes a roadmap for negotiations on the following proposals:
Timeline of the New Pact on Migration and Asylum
- January 2023
- June 2022
- March 2022
- A new EU Return Coordinator appointed
- Skills and Talent package
- March 2021
- September 2020
- Asylum and Migration Management Regulation
- Screening procedure at the external border
- A new Asylum Procedures Regulation
- Revised EURODAC database
- Recommendation on an EU mechanism for preparedness and management of crises related to migration
- Regulation to address situations of force majeure
- Recommendation on cooperation on search and rescue
- Guidance on non-criminalisation of search and rescue