Posted: 28.12.2023 15:18:00

Media: Romania to join ‘air Schengen area’ in March 2024

Romania will join the Schengen area at airports and ports in March 2024, according to the Adevarul newspaper with reference to sources in the Romanian government, TASS reports


“The agreed accession date at EU level for air and sea transport is March 31st, 2024, for land borders the prospect is 2025,” sources told the newspaper. According to the publication, the decision was made at the level of the EU Council after several weeks of negotiations between representatives of the interested states: Romania, Bulgaria and Austria. The agreement reached must be confirmed two days later by a vote in the Committee of Permanent Representatives to the EU.

Moreover, it is noted that EU leaders agreed on reform of the asylum and migration system, establishing clearer rules for checking illegal migrants upon arrival in the EU, taking biometric data, asylum application procedures, rules for determining the member state that will be responsible for the formalisation of this application, co-operation and solidarity between participating countries, and crisis management.

This pact on migration and asylum, noted Romanian MEPs Dragos Pislaru and Vlad Gheorghe, removes Austria’s objections to the accession of Romania and Bulgaria to the Schengen zone, the newspaper stresses.

On December 8th, 2022, at a meeting of the EU Justice and Home Affairs Council in Brussels, Romania and Bulgaria’s applications to join the Schengen area were rejected by the votes of Austria and the Netherlands. The Austrian authorities, against the background of the influx of migrants into the country, have repeated that the Schengen system does not work, and the admission of new members to this zone is impossible. For citizens of countries included in the Schengen area, visa controls at internal borders have been abolished. Currently it includes 27 countries, 23 of which are members of the European Union.