Enhancing cooperation among the Prague Process states

On June 10th, the Prague Process celebrated its 10th Anniversary! Hosted by the Romanian Presidency of the Council of the EU the Anniversary event gathered over 80 senior-level officials from 34 countries, the European Commission, Council of the EU and its current Presidency, EASO, Frontex, ICMPD and IOM at the impressive Parliament building in Bucharest. The event served to take stock of the past decade of cooperation and look into the future.

In their welcome notes, Mr. Cătălin Necula, State Secretary of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Romania, and Mr. Darius Urbonas, Vice Minister of Interior of Lithuania, reminded of the excellent work of the Prague Process and the manifold benefits it provides to the participating states. Ms. Riitta Koponen, representing the Ministry of Interior of Finland, introduced the priorities of the upcoming Finnish EU Presidency and encouraged to continue the cooperation within the Prague Process over the next decade.

In her Keynote speech, Professor Anna Krasteva reflected upon the key migration-related developments observed over the past decade, highlighting the most important megatrends and paradigms.
The three states that have been leading the Prague Process to date – the Czech Republic, Poland and Lithuania – reiterated on the initial idea to launch the Process, its implementation over the past ten years and vision for its further development. The main motivation to initiate the Process in 2009 was to close the gap between EU Member States and partner countries and establish a joint understanding and minimal standards in migration management at the regional level.

The European Commission underlined the importance of the professional links established as well as the need to preserve the cooperation regardless of whether there is an acute crisis. The main benefit of the Process is in the continuous cooperation and its dynamism. All sides appreciated the substantial results achieved by the Prague Process with its relatively small budget.

On June 11th, the annual Senior Officials’ Meeting allowed all states to express their views on the past decade and their future expectations from the Prague Process, as well as to discuss concrete initiatives aiming at possible synergies and operational cooperation in various fields of migration.

The policy brief prepared at the occasion of the 10th Anniversary is available in English and Russian.