Migration and Home Affairs

New EU strategy on voluntary return and reintegration

Tuesday, 27 April, 2021

Today, the Commission adopted the EU strategy on voluntary return and reintegration. The strategy promotes the importance of voluntary returns and aims at increasing their share and number, while improving the quality of the support provided to returnees.

Voluntary returns are more humane, more effective and less costly than forced returns.

The new strategy proposes:

a more coordinated
and integrated approach
among Member States
stronger cooperation with
partner countries to implement
reintegration schemes
guidance supported by digital tools
for a more functional
EU return system

How do voluntary returns work?

The strategy identifies challenges that complicate the uptake of voluntary returns and suggests a coherent approach based on measures under seven pillars:

Strengthening the legal and operational framework
Facilitating effective coordination between all stakeholders
Supporting voluntary return and reintegration of migrants located in non-EU countries
Improving return counselling and referral practices through dedicated tools and guidance
Promoting common quality support
Fostering the sustainability and the ownership of reintegration in partner countries
Using financial resources in a better coordinated manner

Next steps

The Commission, together with the High Representative, EU Member States, Frontex, EU Delegations and partner countries, alongside the wide range of stakeholders and international organisations involved, will work to implement the strategy. The Commission will also monitor the implementation of the strategy, notably in the context of the European Migration Network and in regular discussions with the European Parliament and with Member States in the Council.

For more information: