Romania and Bulgaria should be admitted to the Schengen free-movement zone right away, according to Renew Europe, a pro-European and centrist political party in the European Parliament.
Renew Europe claims that inhabitants of Romania and Bulgaria are arbitrarily denied the right to free movement inside the Schengen region. This is why it has been deemed vital to admit the two nations to Schengen.
According to Renew Europe, discrimination against nationals of Romania and Bulgaria harms both the two nations’ economies and the perception of the EU.
It further emphasised the fact that the EU Parliament, Commission, and the vast majority of Member States have made it quite apparent that Romania and Bulgaria belong in Schengen on the basis of both legal and technological grounds.
Renew Europe further pointed out that Bulgaria and Romania have both successfully completed the Schengen review procedure since 2011 and have complied with all operational standards for applying the Schengen agreement across the board.
“Romania and Bulgaria have since long successfully completed the Schengen evaluation process and met all the necessary conditions for the application of the Schengen acquis. There is no credible reason for Romanian and Bulgarian citizens and companies to be excluded from enjoying the free movement of the EU,” the President of the Renew Europe group, Stéphane Séjourné, said.
Along with the above listed points, Renew Europe said that choosing to join the Schengen region on a full membership basis should not be a question of privilege but rather a procedure that offers transparency and certainty.
Renew Europe also voiced its sorrow about the Austrian veto, claiming that it is not supported by any legal grounds.
“We are calling on the Austrian government to lift its veto without any further delay and allow Romania and Bulgaria to join the Schengen area,” Séjourné added.
Furthermore, Renew Europe reiterated that the baseless position of the government of Austria is instrumentalised by anti-EU propaganda, and for this reason, it has called the European People’s Party to take responsibility for the matter and take measures against the Austrian government.
“Those responsible in the EPP that European political parties have a duty of care towards the perception by EU citizens of the functioning of our Union and of our values,” Renew Europe concluded.
Gerhard Karner, Austria’s interior minister, recently reiterated that the country’s government continues to oppose the enlargement of the Schengen zone. Karner emphasised that Austria is opposed to Bulgaria and Romania entering the Schengen area and that the government is not open to adding additional countries.