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       The Schengen area and EU enlargement Delimitation of the Schengen area During the 80’s, a debate regarding the

“free movement of persons” came out more clearly, setting the scene for different opinions – beginning with the maintenance of the internal control at borders to facilitate the distinctions between EU citizens and non-EU citizens and ending with the “free movement of persons”. In the context of member states not reaching a compromise, 5 states decided, on June 14, 1985, to establish a territory without internal borders: France, Germany and BENELUX. Schengen area was extended little by little, including then almost every member state, except Great Britain and Ireland. Italy signed the Agreement on November 27, 1990; Spain and Portugal joined the Schengen area on June 25, 1991, Greece on November 6, 1992, Austria on April 28, 1995, and finally, Denmark, Finland and Sweden on December 19, 1996. The most important moments in establishing the internal market without obstacles in the way of free movement of persons, constituted the adoption of the two Schengen Agreements: Schengen Agreement from June 14, 1985 and the Conventions on Schengen Implementation (June19, 1990). The coming into force of these agreements meant, in fact, the abolishment of the internal borders between the signatory states and the establishing of a single external border where the immigration control takes place according to a common set of rules regarding visas, the right to asylum, the control of external borders, etc. A Protocol attached to the Treaty of Amsterdam (coming into force on the May 1st, 1999) included the developments brought to the Schengen Agreement in the legal and institutional framework of the EU, in the system of Justice and Home Affairs. As for the legal and practical problems regarding the implementation of the Schengen Protocol provides that the candidate states must fully accept the Schengen acquis. At the same time, the candidate states must: 1. fully accept the provisions regarding Justice and Home Affairs and the working practices regarding their implementation; 2.accept the conventions and the other instruments in the field; 3. accept at the accession data, the actions and common positions, as well as the resolutions, decisions and existing declarations; 4. introduce administrative agreements or other types of agreements to implement the acquis in the field; 5. line the institutions, management systems and administrative understandings at the level of EU standards. The implementation of the provisions of the Schengen acquis, immediately after accession, is less probable to constitute a practical possibility of technical and operational reasons. While the actual process of enlargement is the first of its kind after the integration of Schengen Agreement, there is no precedent for defining Schengen provisions list that could be applied after accession. In the common position of the member states, besides the Luxembourg group, the

candidate states have been invited to deliver an action plan for implementing the necessary preconditions for participating to Schengen (Schengen Action Plan). Schengen does not refer only to issues related to the border control, and covers all political areas in the field of justice and home affairs, design to eliminate the internal border controls (compensatory measures). This is why Schengen action plan should enclose all political areas included in Schengen Convention: 1. External border control; 2. Visas policies; 3. Cooperation between police forces; 4. Juridical cooperation in issues regarding the crime combat and extradition; 5. Drug trafficking; 6. Schengen information system; 7. Personal data protection Taking into account the distinction in the Schengen acquis between the provisions that will be applied from the accession data and the ones that will be applied when the internal borders are eliminated, every field should cover the objectives, the necessary national action, the adoption calendar and the status of action implementation. The prospective of Schengen action plan should be strategic and not only addressing legislative measures and the capacity of operational action, but also the implementation, due to the specific nature of the cooperation in the field of Justice and Home Affairs. The objective of establishing a common area of freedom and security is realized through the free movement of persons, of any nationality, between the internal borders of member states. To reconcile the liberty and security, this problem is accompanied by “compensatory” measures, which imply both the improvement of the coordination between the police forces, customs and the judiciary element, and the necessary measures to combat the important problems such as terrorism and organized crime. At the same time, the Amsterdam Treaty provisions underline the necessity to establish common standards for procedures regarding refugees and the persons who request asylum and the sharing of financial responsibilities in the case of persons who receive asylum. The migration issue in the context of EU enlargement In the context in which the migration tends to include also sensitive issues that touch the essence of Europe nations, especially after 1989, the debate over immigration went to polarization, the speech being dominated by the extremes. The resulting policies proved often to be incapable to solve the contemporary aspects regarding migration. The episodically focusing on politics is less intense and it develops much too late for an efficient management of what becomes a sustained phenomenon of the international migration. The Summit of the European Council in Tampere (October 1999) underlined the fact that it is necessary to further develop common policies regarding asylum and immigration, taking into account a consistent control of external borders, to stop the illegal immigration and to combat organized crime. Tampere Summit underlined the continuation of the policies harmonization in this field, as well as the improvement of

the migration phenomenon management. The European political leaders reasserted the need for a more efficient cooperation with the immigration states of origin, in order to reduce the relational pressures of this phenomenon and, at the same time, of the social integration of illegal immigrants. A detailed and ambitious action plan has been approved, and it should lead to the establishment of a common area, based on the “European principles of opening, liberty, solidarity, non discrimination, respect for human rights and respect for the values of a multicultural society”. Nowadays, there are numerous fears regarding the relocation of the Schengen border towards the East: it could create a new “iron curtain” between East and West, especially considering the lack of a sufficient dialogue between EU, the candidate countries and their neighbours to maintain constructive relations, difficult to build from 1989 on. The Schengen issue must be analysed not only from the perspective of the “iron curtain” but also from the perspective of the enlargement process of the EU, being related with the sensible and actual problems for European public opinion---free movement of persons represents one of the four fundamental liberties of the European integration and of the internal market, together with the free movement of goods, services and capital. Thematically, the negotiation chapter regarding the free movement of persons includes the mutual recognition of the professional qualification, civil rights, the coordination of the social security system, free movement of persons. Even if the EU sustains and acts towards complete opening to Eastern European goods, services and capital markets, the fear of an imminent mass immigration still remains in some of the member states. It may be presumed to particularly affect the border regions of Germany and Austria, where forecasts show the greatest impact of enlargement on the labour market. Therefore, the governments of these countries imposed the necessity of a transition period of 7 years for free movement of labour. The ERU position was initially blocked by Spain, which insisted for guaranties from their European partners not to reduce the EU assistance for its less developed regions, due to the enlargement process. In an attempt to neutralize these fears, Hungary followed by Slovakia and Latvia, reached a compromise: free movement of labour, after accession to the EU, will be applied on the basis of reciprocity. It is possible for the other candidate countries governments to accept this compromise by which a transition period from 2 to 7 years to be applied to the labour from East Europe. The fight against illegal immigration is one of the predominant issues in the EU policy, determining in fact the visa requirements and affecting the relations of EU with Central and East European countries. The zero immigration policy and of the closed borders cannot eliminate the increased tendency of immigration to Western Europe. But this problem raises question marks: how real is the threat for EU?

The member state’s position is based on the difference of the income per capita in comparison with Central-East Europe, difference that will be reduced in a considerable period of time. Contrary to a European point of view, the introduction of the visas will not constitute a barrier for organized crime, on the contrary, a difficult to pass obstacle for common citizens. Enlarging the EU borderland A number of policy studies demonstrate that pressures from the EU for a mechanical application of the standard Schengen acquis by the Central and Eastern European accession candidate countries is going to pose two serious problems: A. making crossborder movements of people more difficult at the new outer border of the EU; B. the cost of upgrading the new east border services to Schengen standards. The Justice and Home Affairs (JHA) policy of the European Union in the enlargement negotiations is only clear at a first general level, namely that applicants are expected to adopt the acquis of both the EU an Schengen. Issues of timing, transition and detail are not yet the subject of clear policy positions. The general impression given from EU documents is that the quicker the candidate states conform to the acquis the better, even in advance of accession, and with as few demands as possible for derogations or lengthy post-accession transitions(in general derogations are viewed more negatively than transitional delays). The external border policy of the EU declares the intention to avoid creation of new barriers in the new post-Communist Europe, and certainly not to create “new Berlin walls”. There is awareness in EU political circles that perceptions of exclusion in the future new border states, in particular those resulting from new political actions of the EU or accession candidate states, can run counter to this objective of EU external policy. There are good reasons for this, given the sensitivity of the transition process in many of the future new border states and the importance of their identification with modern Europe as part of the motivation and support for sustaining the transition towards societies based on modern European norms and values. In particular, the introduction of visa requirements for travel across borders, which have hitherto been visa-free, is one of the most sensitive issues. Some such borders are particularly sensitive because they cut across co-ethnic communities which understandably wish to have continued ease of personal contact and travel, or because of the importance of cross-border shuttle trade, or both (Russian communities in the Baltic states and Kaliningrad, Ukraine and Belarus borders with Poland and the Baltic states, Moldavia in relation to Romania, Hungarian communities in Serbia and Romania, etc) The question is whether there are policy options open to the EU other than putting pressure on candidate states to apply the Schengen-EU acquis as quickly as possible. At the strategic level 3 options may be identified (here the Polish-Ukraine

border is taken as an example): 1.”EU-Schengen orthodoxy”. On day 1 of accession to the EU the new member state completes introduction of the EU visa regime and also the Schengen border is moved to the East (from the German-Polish border to the Polish-Ukraine border). This means that Ukrainian citizens would now need a visa to enter Poland, but could then travel freely across all Schengen borders, as for Polish citizens, there would have not even been a border check for passing into Germany. 2. “Canal lock system”. This would be a hybrid regime. At the time of Polish accession to the EU, the Schengen border would stay for the time being on the GermanPolish border, but the Polish citizen would only need to show his passport on crossing the border. The Ukrainian citizen would still be able to enter Poland visa free, but would need to obtain a Schengen visa to pass through into Germany. 3.”Double perimeter defences”. The argument is sometimes heard that while the EU might require implementation of the EU visa rules or on day 1 of accession, it might be unwilling to move the Schengen border to the new Eastern outer border until later, “until it is absolutely convinced that the quality of that border is fully up to existing Schengen standards”. This could lead to the situation that the Ukrainian (for example) wishing to travel through Poland into Germany would need to obtain both Polish visa (which he does not need today) and a Schengen visa, with controls at both borders. The Polish citizen would have to show his passport at the Polish-German Schengen border, but of course would not need a visa. This policy would indeed entrench perceptions of a “fortress Europe” policy on the part of the EU. Supposing there is a political will to minimize adverse consequences for traditional border movements, there are 3 instruments that could help:  Graduation of the non-member states on to the visa-free list. This may apply first to accession candidate countries, such as Bulgaria, Romania (process engaged), and may advance elsewhere. There could be a policy rule that accession candidate states should not be expected to introduce new visa requirements for fellow candidate states that may be lower in the queue for accession. This seems to be the suggestion made by the European Commission to Slovenia regarding some other South East European states. Such a principle could also be used with regard to states recognized by the EU to have a perspective of being accession candidates such as in other South East European States. This could be the solution to the problem of Hungary, otherwise having to introduce visas for both Romania and FR Yugoslavia, with co-ethnic communities of importance in both cases.  Special “friendly” visa regimes for selected border populations. For example, Estonia and Russia have agreed on the issue of a considerable quantity of longterm, multi-entry, cost-free visas for residents of certain border regions (NarvaIvangorod). It remains to be seen whether such arrangements could be devised for

Kaliningrad, with needs for the Kaliningrad authorities to cooperate over crime control. The biggest case in terms of numbers of cross-border movements is the Polish-Ukrainian border, across which there are a million movements per month at the present time. Also Romanian-Moldavian border sees large-scale movements of Moldavians in and out of Romania.  Transition periods, as already suggested. This would allow time for the new member state to improve its policy of its Eastern border, and for the neighbouring states to improve their qualifications for the visa-free list. During the transition the model could be the “canal lock system” described. The citizens of the new member states would retain rights to visa-free movement into EU. The length of transition for labour market and residence rights begins to be discussed, and there would be a case for the Schengen border to be moved East after a similar transition. By then the neighbouring non-member states might have graduated onto the visa-free list. Romania and the Schengen issue As Romania will become the EU Eastern external border, special attention is paid to the setting up of an integrated management of the state border, the full harmonization of the positive and negative lists and of the legislation on the consular domain. There are precise deadlines and responsibilities, set up for all these issues. Due to internal measures taken to secure its borders, visas for the Romanian citizens entering the Schengen space were eliminated (January 1, 2002). Romania is constantly committed to implement the Schengen Action Plan in order to strengthen the border security. This Action Plan will be monitored and upgraded on annual basis, according to the developments in designing and implementation of the SIS II. Moreover, fear of an increasing migration rate is no longer an issue after January 1st, 2002. Until now, significant decrease was registered in the afflux of the Romanian citizens in the Schengen area. In the field of combating illegal migration, with regard to the persons that were not allowed to enter Romania, an increase of 28% was registered. At the same time, positive trend is registered with regard to persons that were not allowed to exit Romania (14%). On the basis of the readmission agreements with the Schengen countries, the number of Romanian citizens returned from the Schengen borders was twice as small as compared with the first quarter of 2001, in the same period of 2002. The framework legislation in the field of asylum, border control, visa policy and migration transposes most of the relevant acquis: EGO on the status and the regime of the refugees, law on the organization and functioning of the Border Police and Law on the regime of the state border. Legislation that transposes important components of the acquis was adopted in 2002 as follows: amending the Law on the regime of aliens in Romania, modifying the Law on work permits, the adoption of the legislation on the

organization and the carrying out of certain economic activities by natural persons. In the field of trafficking in human beings, the Government of Romania adopted the National Plan for combating trafficking in human beings, comprising public information actions, assistance and protection for the victims of trafficking, international cooperation for countering this phenomenon and special training programmes for the staff involved in enforcing the legislation. As result of the measures undertaken, 11 international channels operating in Romania were disabled during the first quarter of 2002. Furthermore, immediately after 9/11 events, the Romanian authorities have adopted 2 Emergency Government Ordinances on combating terrorism and the use of financial bank system for financing terrorism acts. An integrated approach is envisaged: the establishment of an inter-institutional mechanism meant to prevent and disrupt terrorism taking into account the EU Council Common Positions. In the current international context, Romania pays special attention to the adequate functioning and monitoring of the money laundering prevention, following the development of the acquis in this field. The process of harmonising the acquis in this field is currently at a final stage. Considering the above underlined aspects of Romania’s path towards accession to the EU, the measures that the Government took after obtaining the mandate in 2004, it would be reasonable to emphasize the advantages in accepting Romania in the big family of European nations in the Union, outgrowing the disadvantages. In the future the Schengen area will include Romania and it is easy to foresee the important role Romania could play on its Eastern borders.

Intl studies at the beginning of the 21st century---Vasile Puscas Teora publishing house, Romania, 2005  