UNIFORM FORMATS FOR VISAS AND RESIDENCE
(i) Draft Council Regulation amending Regulation 1683/95 laying down a
uniform format for visas.
(ii) Draft Council Regulation on a uniform format for forms for affixing the
visa issued by Member States to persons holding travel documents which are
not recognised by the Member State drawing up the form.
(iii) Draft Council Regulation laying down a uniform format for residence
permits for third-country nationals.
|Legal base:||(i) and (ii): Article 62(2)(b)(iii) EC; consultation; qualified majority of the participating States|
(iii) : Article 63(3) EC; consultation; unanimity of the participating States
|Document originated:||23 March 2001
|Forwarded to the Council:
||26 March 2001|
|Deposited in Parliament:
||10 April 2001|
|Basis of consideration:
||Minister's letter of 11 December 2001 (received 14 January 2002)
|Previous Committee Report:
||HC 152-i (2001-02), paragraph 9 (18 July 2001)
|To be discussed in Council:
||No date set|
|Committee's assessment:||Politically important
14.1 This document contains three proposals, all concerned
with harmonising the security standards of travel documents. When
we considered it in July, we asked to be kept informed of progress,
especially in relation to the Government's decision about whether
or not to opt in to any or all of the proposals. We also wished
to know the outcome of discussions about whether or not proposal
(iii) was considered to be a development of the Schengen acquis.
We kept the document under scrutiny.
The Minister's letter
14.2 The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State at the
Home Office (Angela Eagle) has now responded in a letter dated
11 December but not received until 14 January 2002. She apologises
for the delay in providing the information we had requested, explaining
that discussions have been ongoing.
14.3 She tells us that the Government opted in to the
three proposals in July, considering that they were consistent
with UK frontiers and immigration control. In her view, there
is positive value in UK participation: the measures will enhance
the security of documents used for third country nationals entering
the UK, without affecting the Government's ability to control
third country nationals.
14.4 In relation to the outcome of discussions about
document (iii), the Minister confirms that there was a lack of
clarity about whether it was a Schengen development measure. The
10th Recital said that it was, but the statement relating to Denmark
in the Commission's Explanatory Memorandum said that it was not.
The Commission has now admitted that this was an error, and an
11th Recital has been inserted, stating that with regard to Denmark
the Regulation does build on the Schengen acquis. The Regulation
is, therefore, proceeding on the basis that it is a development
of the Schengen acquis.
14.5 We do not understand the delay in providing us
with at least some of the information we sought (quite apart from
the late arrival of the Minister's letter). It must have been
possible to let us know last summer of the Government's decision
to participate in the draft Regulations. We remind the Minister
of her undertaking to provide the Committee with either a full
response in three weeks or an explanation as to why a full reply
cannot be provided within that timescale, together with an indication
of when she expects to send a final response.
14.6 Nevertheless, her response is helpful and we
now clear the document.
Schengen acquis is the collective term for the intricate body
of rules governing the Schengen free movement area. Back
to the Chairman of 6 September 2001. Back