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Schengen report 2024: Commission proposes recommendations for a stronger Schengen area 

On 16 April the Commission published the State of Schengen and set the priorities for the year ahead. The Schengen area has evolved into the world’s largest free travel area. Guaranteeing smooth and secure travel to a population of almost 450 million people, the Schengen area is essential for the European Union’s competitiveness.

In 2023, over 10 million Schengen visas were issued, and more than half a billion passengers visited the Schengen area, reaching 92% of pre-pandemic 2019 levels. This has significantly contributed to the EU economy, as tourism contributes close to 10% of the EU’s GDP and provides jobs to about 22.6 million people.

The report shows that important developments were achieved in the past year, among them agreement on the legislative framework, including the Schengen Borders Code, the Pact on Migration and Asylum, the Advance Passenger Information Regulations and the Directive on Information Exchange between law enforcement authorities. The report shows that the Schengen rules are well applied, although there are some implementation gaps, for instance: a reinforced legislative framework, where work is required to put in place the new measures, including police cooperation, to phase out long-lasting internal border controls; an integrated Schengen governance framework, for which the Commission will continue to work towards more complete data analysis in close cooperation with the EU agencies and Member States. Another step was the start of admission of Bulgaria and Romania to the Schengen area by lifting controls at the internal air and sea borders on 31 March 2024.  A further Council Decision is needed for the lifting of checks at the internal land borders with Bulgaria and Romania.

The report reflects on achievements, challenges and developments in the area. This year’s State of Schengen report is also accompanied by a proposal for a Council Recommendation identifying the priority areas for the 2024-2025 Schengen cycle.

Next steps

It is now for the Schengen Council which will take place in 13-14 June to discuss the 2024 Schengen report and adopt the Commission proposal for a Council Recommendation. The implementation of these recommendations will be monitored by the Council, Member States, the Commission and relevant EU Justice and Home Affairs agencies.


Find out more:

2024 State of Schengen report

Press release

Schengen Evaluations

Compendium of Best Practices identified in the framework of the Schengen evaluation and monitoring mechanism

Report on the situation at the internal borders


Proposal for a Council Recommendation for the 2024/2025 Schengen Cycle

Schengen evaluation and monitoring – European Commission (

Link:, dated April 16, 2024 12:53 pm

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