The EU: Justice and home affairs
Issues such as civil law, criminal law, migration and asylum come under the responsibility of the Justice and Home Affairs Council (the JHA Council).
Future work in the area of migration
The European Union has the goal of creating a common immigration policy. It is important that the European asylum system is sustainable and viable, and that all Member States share the responsibility – more countries must do more. Several important decisions were taken in 2015 for managing the emergency situation and strengthening the existing system. At the same time, many Member States have not implemented decisions agreed upon by the Union.
The Government will work to ensure a new common asylum system in the EU, based on a permanent and binding relocation scheme that entails a more even distribution of persons in need of protection in the EU, in that a person applies for asylum in the EU and is then allocated to one of the Member States. It is also necessary to work with countries of origin and transit to address the causes behind people fleeing or being forced to migrate, for example by promoting sustainable development, respect for human rights and good governance.
Review of the EU Visa Code/touring visas
A well-balanced visa policy is important for achieving and maintaining regulated immigration, while promoting movement of persons, trade and tourism. The Government welcomes a revision of the EU Visa Code and the proposal for touring visas. The Government further welcomes the proposal's ambition to facilitate the visa procedure and make it more accessible for bona fide travellers and supports the ambition to grant multiple visas with long validity to a greater extent.
This type of procedure benefits the individual and lightens consulates' administrative burden. The proposals should be cost-neutral. A balance should be maintained between simplification on the one hand and the objective of preventing risks regarding illegal immigration, and to public order and security on the other.
The foremost objective of civil law cooperation is to improve cooperation between authorities in the Member States so as to remove barriers resulting from differences in the judicial and administrative systems.
The Member States are working together to prevent and combat serious crime with cross-border elements, such as organised crime, terrorism, money laundering, human trafficking, drug trafficking and IT crime. The EU's measures to prevent and combat this crime are to provide added value and be pursued in an efficient and effective manner. Sweden particularly stresses that antiterrorism requires broad preventive efforts involving the whole of society, and that we use tools and forums for cooperation that are already in place.
Sweden is monitoring to ensure that all measures are compatible with the fundamental principles of legal security and respect personal privacy.
Work to combat terrorism is a priority for the Government. In August, the Government adopted a new Swedish strategy to fight terrorism. According to the strategy Sweden will be involved in influencing international efforts to combat terrorism and in this, cooperation within the EU is essential.
Future work in the EU should focus on implementing measures that have already been decided in order to combat terrorism in various ways and prevent radicalisation and recruitment to violent extremism.