REPORT FROM THE COMMISSION TO THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT, THE EUROPEAN COUNCIL AND THE COUNCIL Third Progress Report on the Partnership Framework with third countries under the European Agenda on Migration
1. The attached report updates the European Parliament, European Council and the Council on the progress made under the EU’s Partnership Framework approach since the previous progress report was published in December 2016.
2. In response to the unprecedented migratory flows into the European Union and the associated humanitarian crisis, the Partnership Framework approach was agreed at the June 2016 European Council. The Commission wants to embed migration priorities, particularly on returns and readmission, in its relationships with third countries and to deploy the full range of EU and Member States policies and instruments to this end. Five countries were initially chosen for migration ‘compacts’: Ethiopia, Niger, Nigeria, Mali, and Senegal. So far, the Commission judges that there has been, at best, limited improvement in return rates for these countries.
3. In response to the December European Council Conclusions and Member States’ inputs, the Commission has now broadened its geographic approach under the Partnership Framework. Though it has not agreed any new ‘compacts’, the Commission is pursuing different models of enhanced engagement on migration with a wider range of countries. This Progress Report includes sections on the Central Mediterranean route (through Libya or Egypt into Italy) and Asia.