Yesterday, the European Parliament and the Council reached a provisional agreement on the Commission's proposal to strengthen coordination between immigration liaison officers deployed to non-EU countries. The new legislation forms part of the EU's efforts to reduce irregular migration and provide for orderly and legal migration pathways.
Welcoming the agreement, Commissioner for Migration, Home Affairs and Citizenship Dimitris Avramopoulos said "Member States’ immigration liaison officers have unique operational expertise, strong relationships with their host country’s authorities and first-hand knowledge that can play a key role in preventing and combatting irregular migration and smuggling, facilitating the return of irregular migrants and managing legal migration. The new rules agreed today will improve critical information exchange towards those efforts between Member States, the EU and its Agencies. This will ensure that operational and policy decisions are made based on a more accurate understanding of the situation on the ground in non-EU countries."
Currently, EU Member States, the EU and the EU Agencies deploy more than 450 immigration liaison officers in non-EU countries. The European Parliament and the Council now have to formally adopt the revised rules before they can enter into force.