The Council today concluded that Croatia has fulfilled the necessary conditions for the application of all parts of the Schengen acquis. This verification that the necessary conditions for the application of all parts of the Schengen acquis have been met by Croatia is a precondition for the Council to be able to take a subsequent decision allowing for the lifting of internal border controls.
Since its accession to the EU, Croatia applies the provisions of the Schengen acquis, with the exception of the provisions on the lifting of controls at internal borders. According to the EU act of accession of Croatia, the lifting of these controls can only occur following a Council decision to that effect, after verification in accordance with the Schengen evaluation procedures that Croatia fulfils the conditions.
The Schengen evaluation of Croatia took place between 2016 and 2020. In October 2019, the Commission considered that Croatia had taken the measures needed to ensure the necessary conditions for the full application of the Schengen acquis. It closed the last action plan for the evaluated fields in February 2021.
The purpose of today’s conclusions is for the Council to formally establish that Croatia has fulfilled the necessary conditions. The approval of these conclusions is without prejudice to the adoption of the Council decision on the full application of the Schengen acquis.