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European Union Opt in Decision: Dublin IV Regulation

Volume 618: debated on Friday 16 December 2016

The Government have decided not to opt in to the EU proposal for the Dublin IV regulation.

The regulation will govern the process of deciding which member state is responsible for deciding an asylum claim and streamline the transfer process. The UK supports those aims, but the proposed Dublin IV regulation binds member states to participate in a quota-based distribution scheme. The proposal also permits the Commission to impose considerable financial burdens on member states, of €250,000 per applicant not transferred under this mechanism.

The UK has long-standing reservations about such relocation schemes. Asylum seekers should claim asylum in the first safe country they enter and not be moved around the EU using allocation quotas.

By not opting in to Dublin IV regulation, the UK remains bound by the Dublin III regulation, which will allow the Government to return applicants where another member state is responsible for determining their asylum claim and discourage secondary movement or so called “asylum shopping”.

Until the UK leaves the EU, it remains a full member, and the Government will continue to consider the application of the UK’s right to opt in to forthcoming EU legislation in the area of justice and home affairs on a case-by-case basis, with a view to maximising our country’s security, protecting our civil liberties and enhancing our ability to control immigration.