[Travel News] EU Council Consult Parliament On Croatia’s Schengen Admission

The Council has seeked consultation from the European Parliament regarding a draft Council decision on accessing Croatia into the EU's Schengen Zone.

The draft text recommending that Croatia join as a full member of Schengen will now be given to the European Parliament for consultation, according to a news statement released by the Council today, on June 29. The matter will then be in the Council's hands after the latter issues its decision on the subject.

“The Council decision needs to be adopted unanimously by those member states which already apply all parts of the Schengen acquis, plus Croatia,” according to the press release.

On July 1, 2013, Croatia became the latest member to join the EU. With the sole exception of the dropping of internal border restrictions, the nation has since implemented all of the Schengen acquis's rules.

In the last quarter of 2019, the Commission arrived at the conclusion that the Croatian authorities had taken all necessary steps to comply with the requirements for the application of all components of the Schengen acquis. The country has been under the Schengen review procedures from 2016 to 2020.

The press confirms the long-awaited admission of Croatia into the Schengen, stressing that: “On December 9, 2021, the Council approved conclusions on the fulfilment of the necessary conditions for the full application of the Schengen acquis in Croatia.”

On that day, a meeting was held in which we saw the council confirming Croatia’s having fulfilled the requirements for the Schengen acqui, which served as a prerequisite for the admission into the Schengen Area.

The admission of Croatia, however, has been met with rejection. Some member states like France and the Netherlands, because of “rule of law concerns” did not show their approval of Croatia’s accession.

Following that decision, the EU Commission has proceeded to prompt the European Council to adopt the decision so that Croatia (as well as  Romania and Bulgaria by extension) can access the borderless area of Schengen.

Beginning in June of this year, the Commission of EU stated that Croatia satisfies all requirements to join this region, and that this should take place on January 1, 2023, in a conclusion stated in the 2022 Convergence Report, which serves as the basis for the Council's decision on whether a Member Country meets the requirements for adopting the euro as its currency.

“Over the past year, we have taken decisive steps to further strengthen Schengen’s governance and rebuild trust in this crucial driver of our economies,” Schinas said, emphasising that the Commission is dedicated to strengthening the Schengen Area against the ever-changing tides.

Khoa Pham

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