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European Union may bring back national border controls | Immigration Matters

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In response to intense pressure from France and Italy, European Commission to unveil new proposals this week, the Guardian reveals.

Brussels said on Sunday that national passport controls might be reintroduced across Europe to allow the “temporary” re-erection of borders between 25 countries.

Responding to intense pressure from Italy and France to tighten the no-borders system known as the Schengen regime, José Manuel Barroso, the president of the European commission, said he was looking at ways of satisfying the two countries’ concerns. Paris and Rome are alarmed at an influx of migrants fleeing revolutionary North Africa.

In a letter to French president Nicolas Sarkozy and Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, Barroso said that the commission would unveil new proposals on Wednesday on immigration policy, common European asylum procedures, and reform of the Schengen system.

The commission’s proposals are to go to a summit of EU leaders next month, with France and Italy leading the charge for a partial renationalisation of border controls, a trend the commission would like to resist but looks too weak to counter.

The Franco-Italian push to place greater restrictions on the Schengen regime, launched last week after a furious row between Paris and Rome over refugees from Tunisia, has already won support from a handful of other EU countries, including Germany.

The Schengen system, introduced in 1995 after being agreed a decade earlier, abolished frontier checks between 22 EU countries plus Norway, Iceland and Switzerland, and is viewed by many of the 400 million Europeans concerned as one of the more tangible benefits of the EU. Britain and Ireland are not part of the system, insisting on retaining their national border controls.

Despite pressure from Malta and Italy over some 30,000 refugees, mainly from Tunisia in recent weeks, the commission has rejected calls for a temporary suspension of the Schengen regime.

But in his letter, Barroso conceded that national authorities may be given greater leeway to play with the Schengen rules.

“Strengthening the application of the Schengen rules is an area that the commission is in the process of examining,” he said. “The temporary re-establishment of [national] borders is one possibility among others which, subject to specific and well-founded criteria, could constitute one element for strengthening observance of the Schengen agreement.”

Member states are allowed to freeze Schengen and mount border controls solely on national security grounds at present, a move that has to be blessed by Brussels.

The commission, though, appears to be moving, reluctantly but under great pressure from national capitals, towards granting governments more scope for closing down the passport-free zone which extends from the Arctic to the Mediterranean and from the Atlantic to the Baltic Sea. Source: The Guardian.

See article:

UK Border Agency launch new website

The newly revised UK Border Agency website has a better look and feel and navigation seems faster, but previously published links to specific pages of the site may no longer exist.

For instance, the link for European Workers is now:

http://www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/eucitizens/bulgaria-romania/work-permits/applying/

The link for ‘Bulgarian and Romanian nationals‘ is:

http://www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/eucitizens/bulgaria-romania/work-permits/

The UK Border Agency and Home Office website contains a vast amount of information which can be difficult to wade your way through the guidance and Immigration Rules.

The navigation section for European workers from Bulgaria and Romania also appears to have been simplified although finding specific information is still a challenge.

Confusion remains over the need for Bulgarians and Romanians applying for BR1 Yellow Cards as students to take out Comprehensive Sickness Insurance cover. 

The BR1 Form in Section 9 states:

‘If sections 4 (Students) and 5 (Self-sufficient) have been completed: evidence of ‘Comprehensive Sickness Insurance’ cover in the UK and funds to show you are economically self-sufficient, e.g. a bank statement.’

In other words, the paragraph means you need comprehensive sickness insurance only if you are applying under both ‘student’ and ‘self sufficient’ sections.

Nevertheless, student applicants are being asked to take out private medical insurance policies and are being refused if they fail to supply the correct cover.

What is the correct insurance cover?

One insurance company manager told Immigration Matters that he has been trying to get clarification on the exact requirements from the UK Border Agency for several weeks.

Active Quote offers an easy to use online quotation and application system, but also has telephone support from advisers who are on hand to answer questions.

To obtain a quotation for Comprehensive Sickness Insurance visit the Active Quote website 

See article:

 

UK Border Agency launch new website

The newly revised UK Border Agency website has a better look and feel and navigation seems faster, but previously published links to specific pages of the site may no longer exist.

For instance, the link for European Workers is now:

http://www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/eucitizens/bulgaria-romania/work-permits/applying/

The link for ‘Bulgarian and Romanian nationals‘ is:

http://www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/eucitizens/bulgaria-romania/work-permits/

The UK Border Agency and Home Office website contains a vast amount of information which can be difficult to wade your way through the guidance and Immigration Rules.

The navigation section for European workers from Bulgaria and Romania also appears to have been simplified although finding specific information is still a challenge.

Confusion remains over the need for Bulgarians and Romanians applying for BR1 Yellow Cards as students to take out Comprehensive Sickness Insurance cover. 

The BR1 Form in Section 9 states:

‘If sections 4 (Students) and 5 (Self-sufficient) have been completed: evidence of ‘Comprehensive Sickness Insurance’ cover in the UK and funds to show you are economically self-sufficient, e.g. a bank statement.’

In other words, the paragraph means you need comprehensive sickness insurance only if you are applying under both ‘student’ and ‘self sufficient’ sections.

Nevertheless, student applicants are being asked to take out private medical insurance policies and are being refused if they fail to supply the correct cover.

What is the correct insurance cover?

One insurance company manager told Immigration Matters that he has been trying to get clarification on the exact requirements from the UK Border Agency for several weeks.

Active Quote offers an easy to use online quotation and application system, but also has telephone support from advisers who are on hand to answer questions.

To obtain a quotation for Comprehensive Sickness Insurance visit the Active Quote website

See also:

Weekly UK Immigration News Round up 01 May 2011

EU migration policies are ‘mad’ says Lord Digby Jones

Ageing Western populations and falling birth rates – a demographic time bomb

Germany awaits Polish invasion as EU free movement immigration rules start 1 May

Ageing Western populations and falling birth rates – a demographic time bomb

One thousand people emigrate from Britain every day

Immigration policy ‘flawed’, says CIPD

Free service launched to help overseas students study at UK Universities

If you need any immigration advice or are worried about the new immigration rules or need help with Sponsorship or Work Permits, Visa, ILR/Settlement, Citizenship, dependant visa or an appeal against a refusal please email:  

info@immigrationmatters.co.uk or visit www.immigrationmatters.co.uk

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