Following adoption by the European Parliament of the Commission’s proposal to establish an Entry/Exit System to register entry and exit data of non-EU nationals crossing the external borders of EU Member States, the European Commission issued the following statement:
“Over the past years we have been working to strengthen and protect our external borders to safeguard and increase the security of the Schengen area. Today’s vote reflects the political commitment of the European Parliament to swiftly deliver on this priority file. It is an important step towards achieving more effective border management and better oversight of who is crossing the EU’s external borders – and the Commission warmly welcomes this decision.
As President Juncker recalled in his Letter of Intent accompanying his State of the Union Address of 13 September, the Entry/Exit System is a priority initiative which will modernise the management of the EU external border and contribute to the fight against terrorism and serious crime. It will replace the stamping of passports and will allow for an increased automation of border controls, improved detection of document and identity fraud as well as better monitoring of unauthorised short stays of non-EU nationals.
The Entry/Exit System will also close an important information gap and will contribute to achieving full interoperability of EU information systems by 2020, in full respect of fundamental rights and data protection rules.
Following the introduction of systematic checks on all travellers crossing the external border and with the new European Border and Coast Guard Agency being fully operational, the Entry/Exit System represents further concrete action towards making our borders even stronger, smarter and more secure. The Commission is now looking forward to the Council continuing to deliver on this political priority, so that the system can be up and running by 2020 at the latest.”