The European Commission adopted the European Agenda on Migration in May 2015 in response to the urgent need for a comprehensive agenda on migration management. EU’s executive leg has since then adopted a number of emergency measures aiming to relocate 160,000 people seeking asylum and international protection from those Member States that are mostly affected by the crisis to other EU Member States. It is now of special significance that these measures will be fully implemented.
Later on, in September 2015, the Commission presented a series of priority actions to implement the European Agenda on Migration, which should be taken within half a year. The September meeting also promised to provide additional funding. As a result, the Commission already proposed amendments to 2015 and 2016 budgets, increasing resources for the management of the refugee crisis by €1.7 billion. This means that the Commission will have spent €9.2 billion in total on the refugee crisis by the end of this year.
The measures included both short-term actions to immediately deal with the current situation as well as longer-term actions to establish a system to manage migration in the future. The priority actions set out the key measures that are immediately required in terms of operational measures, budgetary support and implementation of EU law. The backbone of the EU’s new strategy to dealing with the migration crisis will be the system of migration management support teams located in so-called ‘hotspots’ that will help Member States fulfill their responsibilities and obligations. The support teams will, however, need the backing of EU agencies as well as closer cooperation with Greece and Italy, which carry the brunt of the refugee crisis.