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EC, 'Bulgaria, Romania and Croatia are ready for Schengen'

Commission, 'Council should opt for full participation'

16 November, 15:45
(ANSA) - BRUSSELS, NOV 16 - The Commission calls on the Council to make now the necessary decisions to enable Bulgaria, Romania, and Croatia to participate fully in the Schengen area.

In a statement issued today, the EU executive takes stock of the three states in implementing the Schengen rules. The EC pointed out that they have contributed significantly to the smooth functioning of the Schengen area during the pandemic and, more recently, in the face of the unprecedented consequences of the war in Ukraine.

The three countries are already partly bound by Schengen rules, but internal border controls with these member states have not been lifted. According to the Commission, they are eligible to enter and should be allowed to do so.

Under the Czech presidency on December 8, the Justice and Home Affairs will vote on the participation of Bulgaria, Romania, and Croatia in the Schengen area without internal border controls.

Currently, 22 EU countries are part of the Schengen area, plus Norway, Iceland, Switzerland, and Liechtenstein. Ireland has exercised its opt-out option on the border controls. (ANSA).

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