Talks ‘Progressing Well’ for Gibraltar to Join Schengen Area

Talks Are Said To Be ‘Progressing Well’ for Gibraltar to Join Schengen Area- Bringing It Closer To The EU Than Ever Before.

Talks between the UK, Gibraltar and Spain that would allow the territory to enter the Schengen area with free movement at the Rock’s crucial Spanish land border are now well advanced. Gibraltar relies very heavily on inflows of goods and people, including 15,000 Spaniards who cross the border daily to work in the territory, whose population is less than 34,000.

Brexit means that from January 1, Madrid, if it so wishes, would be able to create a hard border between Spain and Gibraltar, strangling the territory’s economy. Ironically, the change forced by Brexit would bring Gibraltar closer to the EU than ever, with UK visitors still required to show their passports on arrival in the territory, while anyone crossing from Spain into Gibraltar or vice versa would be able to walk through an open border.

Successful entry into the Schengen area would also allow Gibraltar to receive flights from the 26 countries signed up to the open-border agreement. At the moment, only flights to and from Britain take place as Spain has not agreed to the territory entering EU aviation space. Economically, this would be a great advantage for Gibraltar and its airport.

The difficulty lies in the policing of the new Schengen border in Gibraltar’s ports and the airport, with the Rock reportedly refusing to allow Spanish security forces onto its territory. Instead, the different sides are mulling the option of stationing agents from the EU’s Frontex border agency instead.

Fabian Picardo, chief minister of Gibraltar, said at the weekend that “a Schengen-style agreement would be the most positive”, and thanked the Spanish government for its willingness to pursue a solution.

Thank you for taking the time to read this news article “Talks ‘Progressing Well’ for Gibraltar to Join Schengen Area”. For more UK daily news, Spanish daily news and Global news stories, visit the Euro Weekly News home page.

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Written by

Tony Winterburn

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