Fedasil, the EU and reception
At legislative level, the ‘Reception Directive’ establishes minimum standards for the reception of applicants for international protection within Europe. In the past, Member States operated different and sometimes inadequate practices. The new Reception Directive, adopted by the European Parliament on 12/06/2013, aims to guarantee the highest and most harmonised standards within the Union. For information on the ‘Reception Directive’, visit the European Commission website.
In the area of the reception of applicants for international protection, Fedasil is involved in a European exchange network (EPRA) and in the activities and missions of the EASO agency.
EPRA: exchanges around reception
The European Platform of Reception Agencies (EPRA) is a European exchange network. It is a forum for national administrations responsible for reception with the focus on strategic aspects. Through this platform, Fedasil wishes to encourage sharing of strategic information at management level and improve effective, efficient and informed management of the reception of applicants for international protection in Europe and Belgium, thus contributing to the development of a common European system.
Fourteen countries are currently EPRA partners: Austria, Belgium, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Latvia, The Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Romania, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom. Malta also participates as an observer.
2017-2018: transition towards EASO
In 2016 EPRA and EASO came together in order to define the modalities of a convention between the two networks. 2017 and 2018 will be transition years, where EPRA activities will be gradually integrated within EASO. During this period EPRA will support EASO to set up common activities and develop new tools.
EASO: towards a common European system
The European Asylum Support Office (EASO), created on 19 May 2010, is an agency whose headquarters are located on Malta and which plays a part in the development of the Common European Asylum System. EASO’s role consists in:
- developing practical cooperation between Member States, by facilitating exchange of information on the countries of origin and the training of officers;
- supporting States subject to particular pressure, via the creation of an early warning system and the coordination of teams of experts;
- implementing the common European system by promoting exchanges of good practices, by drawing up an annual report on the asylum situation in the EU, and by producing manuals and procedures on the application of EU instruments in the area of international protection.
Member States are represented in the Administrative Council which gathers regularly. Belgium is represented by its contact point the CGRS. Fedasil is also involved and sends experts for the EASO missions on a regular basis.