Interior Minister Matteo Piantedosi on Wednesday hailed the agreement reached on the EU’s new Pact on Migration and Asylum as a victory for Italy.
“The Pact is the result of long negotiations, in which Italy always played a leading role in order to establish a balanced solution that would no longer make EU border countries, which are particularly exposed to migratory pressure, feel alone,” Piantedosi said after the European Council and the European Parliament announced the agreement.
“Thanks to our ability to find the right balance between responsibility and solidarity, we managed to move forward and conclude a negotiation that had been at a standstill for years.
“The approval of the Pact is a great success for Europe and for Italy, which will now be able to count on new rules to manage migratory flows and fight human traffickers”. Under the Pact, first EU country that a migrant or refugee enters remains responsible for processing their case.
But a new solidarity mechanism has been created among Member States to balance the current system in which a handful of countries, including Italy, are responsible for the vast majority of asylum applications due to their geographical position.
Under this mechanism, some migrants will be relocated to other EU countries and countries that refuse to take in migrants will have to provide a financial contribution.
The agreement reached on Wednesday covers five aspects of the Pact.
These are the Screening Regulation, creating uniform rules concerning the identification of non-EU nationals upon their arrival, thus increasing the security within the Schengen area; the Eurodac Regulation, developing a common database gathering more accurate and complete data to detect unauthorised movements; the Asylum Procedures Regulation, making asylum, return and border procedures quicker and more effective; the Asylum Migration Management Regulation regarding the solidarity mechanism; and the Crisis and Force majeure Regulation, ensuring that the EU is prepared in the future to face situations of crisis, including instrumentalisation of migrants.
“Europe is a strong community and capable of finding great answers to great challenges,” said European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen.
“I welcome the timely political agreement reached by Parliament and Council on the key elements of the New Pact on Migration and Asylum.
“Our goal was to find a fair and pragmatic approach to managing migration together in the EU.
“It is a crucial step in making sure that Europe has the tools to manage migration.”