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Reinforced consular protection for European citizens outside the EU

18-08-2015

Every year, European citizens make over 90 million trips outside the EU. However, there are only four countries – the United States, China, India and Russia - where all 28 EU Member States are represented by embassies or consulates. EU citizens can find themselves in the situation where they need advice or assistance abroad with no consulate or embassy from their own country to help them. This is the risk for the almost 7 million EU citizens who travel or live outside the EU in a place where their Member State does not have an embassy or consulate.

Thanks to EU rules on consular protection, citizens can now seek help from any other EU Member State's consulate or embassy, if for example they are arrested, have a serious accident or lose important documents. All citizens of an EU Member State also have EU citizenship. As an EU citizen they are also entitled to seek help from such an embassy or consulate in crisis situations: EU Member States must help citizens evacuate when needed as if they were their own nationals.

You can find the contact details of the embassies and consulates here, or by contacting the EU Delegation within the country.

In future, citizens will be even better protected when their country is unrepresented outside the EU, thanks to new rules agreed in April this year (IP/14/4803 and factsheetpdf(383 kB) Choose translations of the previous link ).

For further information: