In a press release last week, the European Commission proposed a threefold increase in spending on migration and border control in their 2021-2027 budget.
Fortifying the Fortress?
A key takeaway form this announcement is a new separate fund for integrated border management, and the further strengthening of the European Border and Coast Guard Agency with a new standing corps of around 10,000 border guards. This border guard force, together with EU-LISA, the agency managing the European border’s technical systems, will receive more than half of the roughly 21 billion euros earmarked for “border management” overall.
In addition, the Commission is proposing to increase funding for migration by 51% to reach €10.4 billion under the renewed Asylum and Migration Fund (AMF). The Fund will support Member States’ efforts in three key areas: asylum, legal migration and integration, and countering irregular migration and returns (“faster and more frequent returns” is listed as a key priority…).
Compared to the border management billions, and the emphasis on increased deportation (or “returns”), the allocation of €900 million to the European Agency for Asylum seems slight…