Less than 40 % of the irregular migrants ordered to leave the EU actually return to their home country or a third country. The European Court of Auditors (ECA) has now launched an audit of the EU’s cooperation with third countries on the readmission of irregular migrants. The auditors will assess whether the suite of measures the European Commission took after 2015 have improved cooperation with priority third countries.
Every year since 2008, half a million foreign nationals on average are ordered to leave the EU because they have entered or are staying irregularly. However, only 38 % return to their country of origin or to the country from which they travelled to the EU. This average drops below 30 % for returns outside Europe. One of the reasons for the low returns is the difficulty of cooperating with migrants’ countries of origin, say the auditors.
“How to deal best with migration is a pressing issue for the EU and its Member States”, said Leo Brincat, the ECA Member leading the audit. ”As the EU’s external auditors, we have recently carried out several audits of the arrangements within the EU on asylum and relocation of migrants. We will now take a deeper look at their return and readmission to third countries.”