Commissioner Mariya Gabriel: Migration is a Sensitive subject, often the Object of Intentional Misinformation
Migration is a sensitive subject that is often subject to deliberate misinformation. This phenomenon is dangerous, said Bulgarian commissioner for digital economy and digital society Mariya Gabriel. She took part in a round table on "Migration policy management in the context of the European Parliament elections" hosted by the Bulgarian Parliament. In her speech, Gabriel noted that the issue is becoming increasingly central to the political debate as the election approaches.
"In 2018, around 150,000 arrivals at the EU's external borders are detected, which is 25% less than in 2017. This is the lowest level since 2013 and is over 90% below the peak for the migration crisis in 2015. No doubt today we are making progress towards a better, more secure management of our external borders, "the Bulgarian commissioner noted.
According to her, the best way to deal with migration is to attack the root causes of it. "That is why the EC, through the Africa Trust Fund, supports more than 5.3 million vulnerable people at the moment. More than 600,000 people have received reintegration support after returning to their countries of origin. We have stepped up our efforts to overcome legal migration and combat smuggling of migrants, "said Mariya Gabriel. She also highlighted the role of the European Border and Coast Guard Agency and called for the debate not to focus solely on the number of border guards.
The Bulgarian EU Commissioner also reminded that for all measures to be effective they should receive adequate financial support. She thinks this is also the reason why the EC has proposed a triple increase in the migration budget in the next programming period. "We now have 13 billion euros. The EC's proposal for the period 2021-2027 is 34.9 billion euros, "she said.
In conclusion, Maria Gabriel delivered a message to all European countries. "Our strength will not be in the size of the budget. It is more important that it is properly oriented to the necessary priorities. We all know what the big scattering leads to. Let us clearly define the right set of priorities - securing external borders, a credible and efficient visa policy, support for Member States, greater flexibility and response in emergencies, better coordination, "she said.
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