The European Parliament called on EU member states to allow Romania and Bulgaria to join the Schengen area in early 2023. This was reported by the press service of the European Parliament.
The relevant resolution was adopted by 547 votes, 49 deputies were against it, and 43 abstained.
The document states that the EU Council must decide on the integration of Romania and Bulgaria into the Schengen area by the end of 2022. This should ensure the abolition of checks of people at the internal borders of both countries starting in 2023.
According to MEPs, Romania and Bulgaria have fulfilled all the necessary conditions for several years, but the EU Council has not yet been able to decide on their integration. The preservation of internal border controls is discriminatory and has serious consequences for the lives of European citizens, especially mobile workers, the resolution states.
It is noted that the obstruction of imports, exports, and free movement of goods in cargo ports undermines the functioning of the EU internal market.
Currently, all EU member states except Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Ireland, and Romania are part of the Schengen area, as well as several non-EU countries such as Iceland, Norway, Switzerland, and Liechtenstein.
Integration of new countries into Schengen requires a unanimous decision of the EU Council.